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Sociala kategoriseringar i samspel: Hur kön, etnicitet och generation konstitueras i ungdomars samtal
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Scandinavian Languages.
2008 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The aim of the thesis is to show how gender, ethnicity and generation membership categories are constituted in talk-in-interaction. The main material comprises seven video recordings of multi-participant conversations among school pupils, aged 16 to 19.

An important theoretical term is intersectionality, i.e. the interplay between different social categories. The tools of analysis are mainly derived from conversation analysis and discursive psychology. Identity is seen as a dynamic phenomenon and I analyse the identities the participants themselves make relevant during the course of the conversations.

The investigation, aided by membership categorisation analysis, is carried out into how social categories are negotiated and used in establishing identity. In the analyses, social categories in particular are used in order to constitute identities by the participants’ creating contrasts between in-group, we, and out-group, them. Category-bound activities are used to constitute social categories. The participants also use more specific resources for talk-in-interaction – for example, active voicing and extreme case formulations – to establish or negotiate social categories. Interactional strategies and tools are used in resistance to avoid being attributed membership in a certain category, and partly consist of various ways of renegotiating the implication of belonging to a certain category. Thus, generalising notions about social groups become more nuanced and the adolescents avoid being categorised as passive victims of cultural notions. Gender, ethnicity and generation membership are furthermore constituted through storytelling.

To sum up, the above linguistic resources are used first and foremost for three different types of discursive work during the group conversations. First, the adolescents argue that they are unique and independent and therefore not dependent on cultural expectations. Secondly, they place themselves in relation to the categories by their enacting themselves as normal in various ways. Thirdly, the adolescents establish a positive self image by modifying or renegotiating the non-desirable activities associated with the categories.

The results show how the categories have situational relevance and are dealt with locally, and invoke normative expectations as to how members of social groups ought to behave.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Acta Universitatis Stockholmiensis, 2008. , 200 p.
Stockholm studies in Scandinavian philology, ISSN 0562-1097 ; N.S., 44
Keyword [en]
interaction, intersectionality, identity, membership categorization analysis, gender, ethnicity, generation, conversation analysis, adolescents, Swedish
National Category
Specific Languages
Research subject
Scandinavian Languages
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-7481ISBN: 978-91-85445-88-2OAI: diva2:198377
Public defence
2008-06-05, hörsal 8, hus D, Universitetsvägen 10, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Available from: 2008-05-14 Created: 2008-05-14 Last updated: 2013-12-04Bibliographically approved

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