Turn-Taking, Preference, and Face in Criticism Responses

Document Type: Research Article


Islamic Azad University, Abadan, Iran


Vivas have multiple functions in academia, but their main goal is completing thesis evaluation. At the heart of this evaluation is a series of criticisms and their responsive turns by which participants talk vivas as institution into being (Heritage, 1997). Turn-taking is one of the many ways vivas are talked into being. This study drew upon conversation analysis to look into the turn allocation mechanism of criticism-response exchanges and their relationship with the notion of preference and dispreference in the context of Iranian English-medium vivas. It further investigated the relationship between turn-taking, preference structure, and the notion of face understood, following Arundale (2010) as the relational connection and separation. Findings and observations suggest a combination of turn preallocation, conciliatory turn negotiation, and adversarial turn competition of dispreference and preference as well as of the interactional achievement of slight connection and considerable separation in the discourse.


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