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Responding to an authentic transcript - Oprah Winfrey is talking with so called "wiggers".

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Introduction

Responding to an authentic transcript In this transcript, Oprah Winfrey is talking with so called "wiggers". There are two guests, as well as Oprah Winfrey are discussing the social and cultural changes in society, causing some white people to dress 'black'. Oprah is discussing the fashion choices among white kids. Oprah has no obvious previous relationship with the guests and the audience. It would seem pre-prepared or semi-spontaneous questions and answers. The discourse conventions for this situation are that the manner is polite. It is also expected that there be fillers, hesitation etc, as this conversation is semi-spontaneous. The turn taking is lead by Oprah. She conducts the direction of the conversation. Both the guests and Oprah are engaged, and Oprah also interacts with the audience. ...read more.

Middle

This punctuates the utterances and makes the conversation seem more natural and un-planned. The conversation between Oprah and her guests follow Grice's Maxims. Firstly, the maxim of quantity. Neither Oprah nor her guests talk for too long a period. The turn taking is fairly smooth and this defines a successful conversation. Another Maxim which the conversation follows is the Maxim of relevance. The conversation does not stray form the main subject - "wiggers". The conversation stays on the topic of the black culture and fashion, and does not change. The third maxim of manner is followed, as the conversation is clear, and each person understands what is going on. The maxim of quality s the final maxim and this too is followed. ...read more.

Conclusion

Apart from the direct channel of speech there are certain areas of back channeling, such as the interaction near the end of the transcript " so do you think of it as a black thing; no; you just see it as; I just see it as it is" Since the show is largely opinion based, hesitation and false starts are expected. Hedging of statements is also expected. For example, the guest says "an I think it's marvelous" to soften the force of his statement. The guests sometimes avoid seeming too strong minded about things. To sum up, the type of language used, non fluency features and turn taking are typical of a casual conversation. The conversation is at least semi-spontaneous and this is highlighted by the false starts and repairs within the dialogue. The utterances punctuated by frequent pauses and hesitations keep the conversation at a leisurely pace. Grice's maxims are followed and this makes a successful conversation. ...read more.

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