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Discourse and Identity

by Anna De Fina Deborah Schiffrin Michael Bamberg Anna De Fina Deborah Schiffrin

The relationship between language, discourse and identity has always been a major area of sociolinguistic investigation. In more recent times, the field has been revolutionized as previous models - which assumed our identities to be based on stable relationships between linguistic and social variables - have been challenged by pioneering new approaches to the topic. This volume brings together a team of leading experts to explore discourse in a range of social contexts. By applying a variety of analytical tools and concepts, the contributors show how we build images of ourselves through language, how society moulds us into different categories, and how we negotiate our membership of those categories. Drawing on numerous interactional settings (the workplace; medical interviews; education), in a variety of genres (narrative; conversation; interviews), and amongst different communities (immigrants; patients; adolescents; teachers), this revealing volume sheds new light on how our social practices can help to shape our identities.

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