Original Analysis: An Eclectic Perspective

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Linda Wine
Patricia Frenz-Belkin


Conversations, especially between people who have a common history such as married couples, inevitably build on or refer back to previous talks. Couples are sensitive to what is said “between the lines”, to what they think the other really means when he or she is talking about certain things. As researchers and outside observers, we do not share the knowledge that the participants have in common and, therefore, we must – at least initially – only consider the data at hand in our analysis. In keeping with the principles of conversation analysis, then, according to which the researcher should avoid making inferences as to the participants’ motives and/or intentions, the following analysis will attempt to establish what is demonstrably relevant to the participants at the moment of the observed interaction and how this is displayed by the participants.

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