By François Cooren
What occurs while humans speak or discussion with one another? this can be the daunting query that this ebook proposes to handle by way of ranging from a arguable speculation: What if human interactants weren't the one ones to be thought of, paraphrasing Austin (1962), as “doing issues with words”? that's, what if different “things” may be granted the prestige of brokers in a dialogical state of affairs? Action and company in discussion: ardour, incarnation, and ventriloquism proposes to discover this specified speculation by means of mobilizing metaphorically the idea of ventriloquism. based on this ventriloqual point of view, interactions are by no means basically neighborhood, yet dislocal, that's, they continually mobilize figures (collectives, ideas, values, feelings, etc.) that incarnate themselves in people’s discussions. This hugely unique e-book, which develops the analytical, useful and moral dimensions of the sort of theoretical positioning, can be of curiosity to conversation students, linguists, sociologists, dialog analysts, administration and organizational students, in addition to philosophers attracted to language, motion and ethics
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Extra info for Action and agency in dialogue : passion, incarnation and ventriloquism
It simply means that we should be allowed to speak in terms of action and agency in all these cases. Whenever one can identify someone who or something that makes a difference, whether in terms of activity or performance, there is action and agency. Although I recognize the iconoclastic character of this position, it is, I contend, far from being completely idiosyncratic, that is, particular to my own way of conceiving of action, and can be implicitly or explicitly recognized in the work of prominent scholars such as Michel Callon (1986), Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari (1980/1987), Algirdas Julien Greimas (1987), Bruno Latour (1996), John Law (1986, 1999), George Herbert Mead (1932/1980), Andrew Pickering (1995), Taylor & Van Every (2000, 2010), and even Alfred North Whitehead (1929/1978).
Whether it is a smile, an exchange of hellos, or an angry tone, all these signs need to be somehow produced (whether intentionally or not) and recognized by interlocutors to be able to speak of communication at all. Although such a vision of communication and dialogue could be accused of reducing these phenomena to the emission and reception of “messages” (Shannon & Weaver 1947) – a sin that we, as discourse and dialogue analysts, have learned not to 28 Action and Agency in Dialogue commit anymore – I agree with Gumbrecht and Pfeiffer (1994), Derrida (1988) and Taylor (1993; Taylor & Van Every 2000) that the material dimension of communication is absolutely irreducible, that is, that whenever communication obtains, there needs to be a production of marks, of signs, of texts.
I now contend that the same reasoning can be applied to any semiotic production, whether in the interpersonal context or not. If it holds that whenever one acts, some other enters into action (Latour 1996), one should be able to apply this principle to verbal and nonverbal communication. After all, whenever interlocutors communicate, signs must be somehow produced and recognized, which means that, by definition, an activity of delegation obtains. Incidentally, this is precisely what Derrida (1988) had in mind when he proposed to conceive of any act of communication as an act of telecommunication.