Språkhandlingar i flerspråkiga elevers gruppsamtal : en studie av identitetskonstruktion

Sammanfattning: The aim of this thesis is to investigate how multilingual fifth-grade pupils in Sweden construct their own and each other’s identities through verbal and non-verbal discourse acts, in group discussions of diary texts without a teacher present. The group discussions were audio and video recorded by the pupils themselves and transcribed by me as a researcher.The theoretical foundation of this study is the social constructionist view of identities as multiple, negotiable and flexible processes which are constructed in and through interaction. This is investigated through the participants’ use of discourse acts in the form of initiatives, responses and follow-ups, drawing on the Exchange Structure Model combined with interactional tools from Conversation Analysis. The use of ESM has been expanded in the study for the investigation of non-verbal discourse acts as well. Zimmerman’s framework of the three identity dimensions discourse, situated, and transportable identities has been applied to the analysis of discourse acts, to study the pupils’ identity constructions. Their use of code-switching has been studied in connection with the third identity dimension, here the transportable identity as multilinguals.The results show that the pupils as a group cannot be said to make their transportable identities as multilinguals relevant to a high degree in the group discussions. However, some of the pupils make their multilingualism relevant locally, using code-switching as a resource to express feelings, to wield power, and for face-saving effects etc.Furthermore, reciprocal contingency between the three dimensions of identity is shown by the pupils’ identity constructions and co-constructions in the group discussions. Discourse identities like initiating diary reporter, confirmation seeker, questioner, responder and endorser are constructed at the micro level of interaction by the participants using verbal and non-verbal discourse acts. These identities build up situated identities together with existing participation frames, such as leader, ‘disser’, ‘group clown’ or reluctant. Both these identity dimensions build up transportable identities as multilinguals together with tacit background information of the participants’ language proficiency. Moreover, the results show how an expanded ESM can be used for analysing both verbal and non-verbal discourse acts and the construction of all three identity dimensions.

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