The interaction of micro and macro levels and its impact on the construction of social representations in discourse

Maria Zerva

Université Marc Bloch- Strasbourg II, France


Following an important branch of French sociolinguistics, I will study the construction of social representations (S.R.) in speakers’ discourse, as it appears in sociolinguistic interviews. My data consists of sociolinguistic fieldwork of bilingual communities (speaking Greek and Turkish) in Greece. In every community there is a number of S.R. available to the members of the community in question; this forms the S.R. “nucleus” (Bothorel and Tsamadou 2007, Guimelli 1994), i.e. the shared part of the S.R., which is more stable regarding its content and can be studied using the methods of content analysis. The speakers however choose among these common S.R. according to their beliefs and the special circumstances of each exchange. They constantly elaborate the “nucleus” of S.R. and negotiate their adherence in order to adapt the S.R. to the needs of the moment; in consequence, they subscribe to the S.R. to a different extent, thus constituting the “peripheral schemes” (Bothorel and Tsamadou 2007, Guimelli 1994), which are less stable, discourse constructed aspects of the S.R. The most appropriate way to study the fluctuations of the “realization” of the S.R. is a linguistic analysis of the discourse phenomena which form it. This micro approach combined to the macro (the content analysis) can give us a fairly complete overview of the S.R. phenomenon. In my contribution, I will focus on the interaction of the macro and micro levels in order to establish how they influence each other. Therefore, I will present both the results of content analysis and the detailed study of language choices in selected parts of my data.


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Session: POSTERS: Focus on interaction, discourse, media, professional settings
Friday, April 4, 2008, 12:45-15:45
room: foyer