Orienting to a co-participant’s emotion in French L2

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This chapter examines emotion displays in second language (L2) dyadic interactions involving an L2 French-speaking au pair and her L1 French-speaking host family. Data are drawn from a corpus of audio-recorded dinnertime talk. The analysis focuses on the ways the au pair displays her orientation to a co-­participant’s emotional stance. The study shows that the ability to appropriately display, recognize, and respond to emotions is an important part of L2 interactional competence. Orienting to a co-participant’s emotional stances plays a central role in allowing the au pair and her host family to establish “emotional solidarity,” leading to her status as an “insider,” legitimate interactional partner, and valued member of the family.


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