Routledge Revivals: Understanding Interaction in Central Australia (1985): An Ethnomethodological Study of Australian Aboriginal People, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Routledge Revivals: Understanding Interaction in Central Australia (1985)

An Ethnomethodological Study of Australian Aboriginal People, 1st Edition

By Kenneth Liberman


344 pages

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pub: 2017-02-24
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First published in 1985, this book gives an intimate account of the cultural-political conflict between Australian Aboriginal people and Anglo-Australians, presenting the Australian social world from the perspective of the Aboriginal person.

Adopting a rigorous ethnomethodological analysis and the techniques of ethnolinguistics, Liberman looks at the interactional detail of the everyday life of traditionally oriented Australian Aboriginals. He uses tape transcripts of actual interaction to identify chief characteristics of Aboriginal social life. Liberman goes on to show how differences in systems of interaction have influenced relations between Australian Aboriginals and Anglo-Australians.

With its account of the politics of cultural conflict in a multi-cultural environment, this book is an apt extension of ethnomethodological issues to political concerns. It also exposes Aboriginal perceptions of Anglo-Australian/Aboriginal interaction to a degree not previously achieved in any sociological or anthropological study. As such, this book will be a valuable case study to students of social anthropology, race relations, intercultural communication and sociolinguistics.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements; Part I The collaborative production of congeniality and consensus in an Aboriginal society; 1. Congenial fellowship and consensus in central Australia 2. A competent system of organizational items 3. Consensus and society; Part II Through a glass, darkly: a historical review of European/Aboriginal interaction; 4. Aboriginal appraisals of Europeans 5. Anglo-Australian appraisals of Aboriginal people; Part III Intercultural communication in the Western Desert; 6. The hermeneutics of intercultural communication 7. Concrete relations between Aboriginal- and Anglo-Australians 8. Cultural politics; Appendices; Bibliography; Index

About the Series

Directions in Ethnomethodology and Conversation Analysis

Directions in Ethnomethodology and Conversation Analysis

Ethnomethodology and Conversation Analysis are cognate approaches to the study of social action that together comprise a major perspective within the contemporary human sciences. Ethnomethodology focuses upon the production of situated and ordered social action of all kinds, whilst Conversation Analysis has a more specific focus on the production and organisation of talk-in-interaction. Of course, given that so much social action is conducted in and through talk, there are substantive as well theoretical continuities between the two approaches. Focusing on social activities as situated human productions, these approaches seek to analyse the intelligibility and accountability of social activities ‘from within’ those activities themselves, using methods that can be analysed and described. Such methods amount to aptitudes, skills, knowledge and competencies that members of society use, rely upon and take for granted in conducting their affairs across the whole range of social life.

As a result of the methodological rewards consequent upon their unique analytic approach and attention to the detailed orderliness of social life, Ethnomethodology and Conversation Analysis have ramified across a wide range of human science disciplines throughout the world, including anthropology, social psychology, linguistics, communication studies and social studies of science and technology.

This series is dedicated to publishing the latest work in these two fields, including research monographs, edited collections and theoretical treatises. As such, its volumes are essential reading for those concerned with the study of human conduct and aptitudes, the (re)production of social orderliness and the methods and aspirations of the social sciences.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / General