Chapter 11. The pursuit of advice on US peer telephone helplines: Sequential and functional aspects

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Building upon previous published work on advice giving and receiving in this same setting, this empirical paper uses conversation analysis to describe methods used to pursue one’s advice after its initial rejection. Thirty-two instances of pursuing advice were found within 188 individual instances of giving advice from 65 recorded calls to four different peer support lines in the northeastern United States. In this paper, three different sequential and functional orientations to pursuing advice are described: interrogating (seeking information and additional details on the other’s situation); supporting the advice with additional accounts; and supporting the advice with additional accounts and expressions of concern or worry. These extended advice pursuit sequences typically also involve repeated advice, indirect advice, and suggested alternative options.


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