Culture, Contexts, and Communication in Multicultural Australia and New Zealand: An Introduction
  • ISSN 0957-6851
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9838
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This paper uses audio and video data to examine the discourse of a New Zealand IT company director in business meetings. Three examples of the director dealing with behaviour by his subordinates that he wants to influence are analysed by drawing on a collection of discourse analytic frameworks including conversation analysis, social constructionism, politeness theory, and a community of practice framework. The examples reveal that the director employs a range of discursive strategies to express his disapproval and to rationalise his feedback. At times he adopts indirect and mitigated strategies, while at other times he uses explicit and authoritative strategies. Moreover, the examples also demonstrate the dynamic nature and the complexity of interaction. The analysis shows that the director’s choice of strategies in these examples is a response to the specific discourse context and represents the result of negotiation between interlocutors, and that the giving of negative feedback occurs as a sequence of utterances instead of one single utterance. Finally it is suggested that the strategies used by the director are relevant resources because of the close relationships between the director and his subordinates and the shared repertoire of the focus workplace.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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