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10-05-2021 | Empirical Study / Analysis | Issue 2/2021

Human Studies 2/2021

Demonstration of Understanding Through the Deployment of Japanese Enactment

Journal:
Human Studies > Issue 2/2021
Author:
Yuki Arita
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Abstract

The present study examines the interactional phenomenon of enactment, wherein conversation participants act out themselves or others by utilizing both linguistic and non-linguistic resources and demonstrate certain ideas rather than describe them. While past research has revealed that people, based on their first- or second-hand experiences, frequently use enactment during storytelling activities to depict what story characters said and/or did, this article explores cases in which participants in Japanese conversations enact based on what co-participants have experienced. In such cases, producers of enactment are recipients of the enacted information provided by co-participants. This study refers to interactants who originally provide certain information as “tellers,” and it refers to interactants who enact the received information as “recipients”. Employing Conversation Analysis as an analytical framework, the present study investigates how recipients’ enactments are utilized as a resource to demonstrate their understanding of information given at the moment of their interaction in Japanese.

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