Documenting Change from a Conversation Analytic Perspective: Introduction to the Spring Forum

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Carol Hoi Yee Lo
Kelly Katherine Frantz


Since its inception, Conversation Analysis (CA), which aims to describe the fine-grained machinery of talk (Sidnell, 2010), has uncovered an impressive range of “member’s methods”—how members of society accomplish social actions. The “lived work” of participants is, in fact, dynamic and complex: Facing new situations and unforeseen contingencies could inform how participants respond to similar situations in the future. And beyond tracing the emergence of new knowledge and practices, our understanding of member’s knowledge can also be extended by charting how novices of a community of practice develop competence and expand their repertoires. After all, novices do not become experts overnight; documenting the trajectories and evolutions of practices can provide important insights into the very process of becoming a competent member.

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