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Practices of indexing discrepant assumptions with German ich dachte ('I thought') in talk-in-interaction

  • This paper studies practices of indexing discrepant assumptions accomplished by turn-constructional units with ich dachte ('I thought') in German talk-in-interaction. Building on the analysis of 141 instances from the corpus FOLK, we identify three sequential environments in which ich dachte is used to index that an assumption which a speaker (has) held contrasts with some other, contextually salient assumption. We show that practices which have been studied for English I thought are also routinely used in German: ich dachte is a means to manage epistemic incongruencies and to contrast an incorrect with a correct assumption in narratives. In addition, ich dachte is also used to account for the speaker's own prior actions which may have looked problematic because they built on misunderstandings which the speaker only discovered later. Moreover, ich dachte-practices may also be used to create comic effects by reporting an earlier, absurd assumption. The practices are discussed with regard to their role in regaining common ground, in managing relationships, in maintaining the identity of a rational actor, and in terms of their exploitation for other conversational interests. Special attention is paid to how co-occurring linguistic features, and sequential and pragmatic factors, account for local interpretations of ich dachte.

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Author:Arnulf DeppermannORCiDGND, Silke ReinekeORCiDGND
Parent Title (English):Functions of Language
Place of publication:Amsterdam
Document Type:Article
Year of first Publication:2020
Date of Publication (online):2020/06/22
GND Keyword:Deutsch; Gesprochene Sprache; Konversationsanalyse; Meinungsäußerung; Vermutung <Linguistik>
First Page:113
Last Page:142
This article is under copyright and that the publisher should be contacted for permission to re-use or reprint the material in any form.
DDC classes:400 Sprache / 430 Deutsch
Open Access?:ja
Leibniz-Classification:Sprache, Linguistik
Linguistics-Classification:Pragmalinguistik / Kommunikationsforschung
Program areas:Pragmatik
Licence (German):License LogoUrheberrechtlich geschützt