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I-challenges: influencing others’ perspectives by mentioning personal experiences in therapeutic-community group meetings

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journal contribution
posted on 20.04.2017 by Marco Pino
In this paper I examine the communicative practice of mentioning a personal experience as a vehicle for challenging a peer’s perspective. I study this in the context of Therapeutic Community (TC) group meetings for clients recovering from drug misuse. Using conversation analysis, I demonstrate that TC clients use this practice, which I call an I-challenge, to influence how their peers make sense of their own experiences, and to do so without commenting on those peers’ experiences and perspectives. This study highlights the power of talking in the first person as a means of influencing others–a notion previously made popular by Thomas Gordon’s work on ‘I-messages’. Additionally, this study illustrates a novel way of studying social influence. Whereas previous research in social psychology has focused on the cognitive constraints behind phenomena of social influence and persuasion, here I contribute towards understandings of the interactional norms underlying the organisation of influence as a structured and coordinated domain of social practice.

Funding

The research leading to these results has received funding from the People Programme (Marie Curie Actions) of the European’s Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under REA grant agreement no 626893.

History

School

  • Social Sciences

Department

  • Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies

Published in

Social Psychology Quarterly

Volume

80

Issue

3

Pages

217-242

Citation

PINO, M., 2017. I-challenges: influencing others’ perspectives by mentioning personal experiences in therapeutic-community group meetings. Social Psychology Quarterly, 80(3), pp. 217–242.

Publisher

SAGE © American Sociological Association

Version

AM (Accepted Manuscript)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/

Acceptance date

30/03/2017

Publication date

2017-08-11

Notes

PINO, M., 2017. I-challenges: influencing others’ perspectives by mentioning personal experiences in therapeutic-community group meetings. Social Psychology Quarterly, 80(3), pp. 217–242. SAGE © American Sociological Association. Reprinted by permission of SAGE Publications. http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/0190272517706048

ISSN

0190-2725

eISSN

1939-8999

Language

en

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