E-STAMP. Epistemic StanceTaking from a Multimodal Perspective
Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF)
[PZ00P1_168033]. CHF 421,317
Applicant. Success rate: 17%
One of the most fascinating dimensions of language lies in the fact that it allows the speaker to inscribe in the utterance (the product) something about its context of production. In that way, the speaker can not only manage the presence and absence of the self and others in discourse, but also take more or less responsibility for the information conveyed by the utterance. This phenomenon is what we usually call stance-taking in discourse and interaction. It raises some critical questions: To which degree does the speaker manifest responsibility for the utterance and the embedded point of view? Does (s)he take a point of view into account without taking it in charge (i.e. without adopting it)? Does (s)he delegate the responsibility for it to other people? If yes, does (s)he attribute it in an explicit way, or does (s)he expect the recipient to understand to whom it refers? Such questions, which relate to the implication of the speaker and the stance (s)he takes in context, are not only anthropological issues. They are also relevant for Applied Linguistics, the aim of which is to describe linguistic resources as they are part of the situated establishment of social realities, whether ordinary or institutional.
E-STAMP focuses on a specific dimension of stance-taking: the degree of certainty or uncertainty, or even of delegation of knowledge, that the speaker can implement in the utterance and in their interaction with others. The state of the art of this issue is strongly fragmented. Theoretically, we know that epistemic stance-taking concerns the degree of certainty towards information (I know, I guess, I don’t know), as well as the source or origin of the information (me, you, someone else). We also know that these two facets of stance-taking are distributed across various levels of linguistic description: deixis (expression, in the utterance, of the personal, spatial and temporal aspects of talk), modality (expression of the attitude of the speaker toward the content expressed in the utterance), and intertextuality or dialogism (expression of the voices and points of view of other people, through reported speech and polyphonic markers). However, we do not know how these levels – and the corresponding observables – are linked to one another in talk-in-interaction, and we know even less when taking multimodality into account. Multimodality refers to the fact that the verbal resources used in talk-in-interaction are embodied and therefore embedded in a larger semiotic environment, where prosody, gaze direction and gestures play a role in expressing and interpreting phenomena.
E-STAMP therefore aims to study epistemic stance-taking in its enunciative, interactional and multimodal complexity. At the theoretical and methodological levels, the project will link together three disciplinary fields: French Enunciative Linguistics, Interactional Linguistics, and Multimodal Conversation Analysis. At the analytical and descriptive levels, the study will be based on French video-recorded data collections that document various institutional genres related to political communication (public and TV debates) and workplace interaction (work meetings and collaborative work). Each collection will document one phenomenon (e.g. all the parenthetical expressions ‘I don’t know’; every example of indirect reported speech), which is to be studied at the interactional and multimodal levels, investigating both the position and function of the unit in the turn and sequence, alongside the prosodic and mimo-gestural environment of the unit.
The expected results are (i) a theoretical model of epistemic stance-taking that takes the two facets of the issue (i.e. degree of certainty and source of information) into account, (ii) an analytical device that reflects such a model and that encompasses both the linguistic and non-linguistic observables to be considered and the relationships that such observables tend to have, and (iii) analyses and descriptions of epistemic stance-taking in French empirical data collections.
In terms of its relevance and potential impact, the project will contribute to a better understanding of language use in general, and of the nature of specific verbal resources from an interactional point of view. It will not only promote a mutual enrichment of French Enunciative Linguistics and Interactional Linguistics, but it will also integrate multimodality at the theoretical and analytical levels. Finally, the project will provide analyses of a language – French – that has not been discussed a great deal from the perspective of epistemic stance-taking. It will therefore lay the foundations for cross-linguistic comparison, the significance and value of which is currently particularly acknowledged.
IMPACT. multIMedia interface: Presentation – Analysis – CommenTs
University of Lausanne
Faculty of Arts & Fund for pedagogical innovation
IMPACT is a project funded by the Faculty of Arts and the fund for pedagogical innovation at the University of Lausanne. The goal is to develop an easy-to-use web interface for consulting, transcribing and analyzing audiovisual data. => Website.
A Multimodal Approach to Argumentation in the Workplace
Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF)
Early Postdoc.Mobility fellowship
[P2LAP1_155110] CHF 50,300
Applicant. Success rate: ± 55%
2014 – 2015
Visiting Scholar at the Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand; School of Linguistics and Applied Language Studies – Language in the Workplace Project (Prof. Janet Holmes). + Visiting Scholar at the ENS-Lyon, France; ICAR Lab (Prof. Véronique Traverso)
Débattre: pratique de l’argumentation et inscription de l’identité dans une perspective textuelle et interactionnelle
University of Lausanne, Faculty of Arts, Linguistics
2007 – 2012
Advisor: Marcel Burger
Jury: Marianne Doury, Laurence Kaufmann, Lorenza Mondada.
DYLAN: Language Dynamics and Management of Diversity
European Union Framework Programme 6 (FP6).
2006 – 2011
DYLAN was an Integrated Project (Contract N° 028702) funded under Framework Programme 6 (FP6) of the European Union. The project embraced 20 research institutions in 12 European countries and ran for five years (2006-2011). The DYLAN project sought to identify the conditions under which Europe’s linguistic diversity can be an asset for the development of knowledge and economy. => Website.
Tasks: fieldwork, data recording and confection, transcription, analysis, reports, organization and planning, participation to Consortium Meetings (Basle-2007; Lyon-2008; Barcelona-2009)