Volume 33, Issue 1
  • ISSN 1387-6740
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9935
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Bringing together “identity as agency” (Schiffrin, 1996De Fina, 2003), Bamberg’s (1997) three-level positioning, and Tannen’s (2008) narrative types, I analyze three interview narratives of Korean women coerced into the Japanese military’s sexual slavery during World War II, commonly known as “comfort women”. Through an eye toward “others” – e.g., Japanese soldiers, “comfort station” managers, interviewers, and sociocultural and sociopolitical forces – I investigate the manipulation of the women’s agency with their identities positioned as victims, rather than survivors. Meaning-making strategies, such as “constructed dialogue” (Tannen, 2007[1989]), repetition, deixis, and third turns, present the ways in which various others objectify and marginalize the women as well as control their stories. These illuminate how the women’s identities are granted and defined by others. This other-granted identity work reinforces aspects of language ideologies and ideologies of being silenced.


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