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Gender orientations to outward appearance in Japanese conversation: A study in grammar and interaction

Tanaka, H and Fukushima, M (2002) 'Gender orientations to outward appearance in Japanese conversation: A study in grammar and interaction.' Discourse & Society, 13 (6). pp. 749-765. ISSN 0957-9265

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This article employs `grammar and interaction' ? a new strand of conversation analysis ? to contribute to the debate concerning the utility of conversation analysis for feminist research by exploring methods for making gender orientations accessible for analysis. We examine mixed-sex conversations in Japanese, in which participants discuss each other's outward appearance in general, and body weight in particular. We propose that certain `breaches' of conversational organization can usefully be explained in terms of a possibly competing, normative `gender constraint' involving orientations towards a man's expanded rights to topicalize, assess, demand and dictate standards of women's outward appearance. It is further suggested that this constraint may cut across a plethora of rudimentary organizations of conversation. The proposed constraint is shown to be oriented to or resisted by participants through the contingent mobilization of grammatical, prosodic and semantic resources to constitute themselves and others as `men' or `women' vis-�-vis this constraint.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: appearance; conditional relevance; conversation analysis; feminism; gender orientation; grammar and interaction; Japanese conversation; preference organization; weight
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > Sociology, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2015 10:26
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2022 13:17

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