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Collaboration in Intercultural Discourse

Examples from a multicultural Australian workplace


Deborah M. Neil

In Collaboration in Intercultural Discourse, the author examines naturalistic conversations in English between speakers from diverse ethnolinguistic backgrounds. The study focuses on the discourse strategies which contribute to their successful intercultural communication. Strategies such as repetition, paraphrasing, clarification and 'turn-sharing' are all examined individually and illustrated with textual examples. The findings of this study contrast with those of many studies of intercultural communication which tend to highlight instances of miscommunication. A collaborative communicative style is observed whereby speakers share the responsibility for producing mutually intelligible talk. The author proposes a model of collaborative intercultural discourse.
Contents: Cross-cultural communication - Discourse analysis - Language and the work-place - Joint production.