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Linguistics and conflict studies

O'Driscoll, Jim (2006) Linguistics and conflict studies. In: Linguistic impoliteness and rudeness (LIAR) 2006: confrontation and conflict in discourse, 3rd - 4th July 2006, University of Huddersfield. (Unpublished)

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The last two decades have seen a growth MA courses and research centres dedicated to conflict. At present, these are conducted mainly under the auspices of politics and history, sometimes with help from economics, sociology and psychology.
Yet one thing common to all cases of conflict is language, so linguistics should be in there too! It has much to offer. For example: interactional sociolinguistics can describe the frames in which conflict occurs, how situational norms and language resources are manipulated and how identities and power relations are enacted; intercultural pragmatics can show the culture‐bound – and cross‐culturally variable ‐ realisations of acts, behavioural norms and their relation to the above themes; critical discourse analysis reveals how texts encode entailments and create and reinforce the ideologies and oppositions underying conflicts.
There has, of course, been a great deal of work applying the above approaches to particular adversarial or antagonistic encounters and to argumentatve discourse. The question explored in this paper is how these approaches and their applications might be ‘tweaked’ to apply across a range of conflict situations, whether they can be applied consistently and how / whether they can be married with existing theorising in the field of conflict.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Schools: School of Music, Humanities and Media
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Depositing User: Cherry Edmunds
Date Deposited: 17 Dec 2008 10:37
Last Modified: 28 Aug 2021 10:43


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