|Title||Co-constructing Social Roles In German Business Meetings: A Conversation Analytic Study|
|Tag(s)||EMCA, Business meeting, German|
|School||University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign|
In Chapter 1, I situate this dissertation within existing studies on business meetings and introduce the research methodology of conversation analysis. Chapter 2 examines all uses of the particle ok in German business meetings. In my presentation of the first description of ok in a language other than English, I argue that certain uses of ok relate to enacting the social role of ‘doing-being-boss.’ Furthermore, Chapter 3 examines the practice of how employees produce extended reports about ongoing projects. In discussing the social role of ‘doing-being-employee,’ I compare the practice of story-telling in ordinary conversation to that of producing reports during German business meetings. Specifically, I describe how speakers orient to a systematic use of intonation patterns to enable correct and complete reports. Moreover, Chapter 4 problematizes the notion of pre-assigned social roles. Using the concept of zones of interactional transition, I discuss instances where employees question the role of meeting facilitator, chairperson, and boss. In analyzing the interactional fallout in these examples, I offer additional evidence that social roles such as boss represent a social construct which depends on a constant co-construction of this role. Finally, in the conclusion I situate my findings within the field of institutional talk.