Stokoe-Characterological formulations of persons in neighbourhood complaint sequences.pdf (2.36 MB)
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Characterological formulations of persons in neighbourhood complaint sequences

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journal contribution
posted on 04.02.2020, 11:31 by Marc Alexander, Elizabeth StokoeElizabeth Stokoe
This article shows how speakers mobilise characterological formulations of others and, particularly, ‘types’ of persons, in social action. We extend previous work in discursive psychology, in which notions of self or others’ identity have been well-studied as categorial practices, by focusing specifically on the occasioned use of “[descriptor] person” formulations which index the characteristics of people. Drawing on a British corpus of 315 telephone calls about neighbour problems (e.g., noise, verbal abuse) to environmental health and mediation services, we show that callers build in-situ descriptions of self and neighbour for the practical activity of complaining or defending against accusations - as types of people that are, for instance, reasonable (e.g., “I’m an extremely tolerant person”) in contrast to their neighbours’ shortcomings (e.g., “He’s a rather obnoxious person”). Our findings demonstrate that psychological predicates of self and other, indexed through characterological formulations, are recipient designed (i.e., formulated to display an orientation to co-present others) in ways that shape the institutional relevance for service provision. We conclude that, like many other aspects of the psychological thesaurus, ‘character types’ are not just the preserve of psychologists, but a routine resource for ordinary social interaction.

Funding

Economic and Social Research Council [RES-148-25-0010]; [ES/T008172/1]

History

School

  • Social Sciences

Department

  • Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies

Published in

Qualitative Research in Psychology

Volume

17

Issue

3

Pages

413-429

Publisher

Published with license by Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Rights holder

© 2020 The Author(s)

Publisher statement

This is an Open Access Article. It is published by Taylor and Francis under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 Unported Licence (CC BY). Full details of this licence are available at: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Acceptance date

24/01/2020

Publication date

2020-02-22

ISSN

1478-0887

eISSN

1478-0895

Language

en

Depositor

Mr Marc Alexander . Deposit date: 3 February 2020