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Replying with the freestanding ‘we’ 
in Greek conversations

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Abstract

The present chapter focuses on the freestanding first person plural subject pronoun <i>&#949;&#956;&#949;&#943;&#962;</i> (&#8216;we&#8217;) in Modern Greek. Previous work on <i>&#949;&#956;&#949;&#943;&#962;</i> (Pavlidou 2008, 2012) has shown that its non-referential functions depend on the sequential context in which the turn containing this freestanding pronoun appears. Adopting a Conversation Analysis perspective, the chapter investigates one particular sequential context in which <i>&#949;&#956;&#949;&#943;&#962;</i> appears, namely replies to questions. It is shown that &#8211; with hardly any exceptions &#8211; such replies are type non-conforming and/or dispreferred. Therefore, it is argued, <i>&#949;&#956;&#949;&#943;&#962;</i> indexes some kind of trouble. However, as this conclusion cannot be extended to all occurrences of <i>&#949;&#956;&#949;&#943;&#962;</i> in other second pair parts, it is suggested that underlying the function of indexing trouble there is an argumentative stance on the speaker&#8217;s part toward the on-going interaction.

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