Thema's en trends in de sociolinguistiek 4
  • ISSN 0169-7420
  • E-ISSN: 2213-4883
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A detailed examination of participants' everyday conversations in an online support group for people suffering from depression has shown that next to talking about their feelings of depression, participants display a pervasive concern with whether their request for support is appropriate. It was demonstrated how contrary to the assumptions that are often held with regard to communication via the Internet - portraying online communication being thought of as straightforward, free of obligations and ephemeral - participants employ a number of discursive procedures to account for their call for support. Participants may for example describe their request for support as a result of external emotions, present it in terms of honest feelings or explicitly and fiercely distance themselves from the part that voices these feelings. At the same time, talking about your feelings and asking for support is also presented as a moral obligation. The fragments presented thus show that what counts as an 'appropriate' request for support is a participants' concern and subject to continuous negotiation.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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