1st Edition

Studying Language in Interaction A Practical Research Guide to Communicative Repertoire and Sociolinguistic Diversity

By Betsy Rymes Copyright 2023
    230 Pages 21 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    230 Pages 21 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Studying Language in Interaction is a holistic practical guide with a hybrid purpose: To emphasize a particular approach to language in the world—a theory of language that has room for communicative repertoire and sociolinguistic diversity—and to provide a practical guide for new researchers of language in interaction.

    Each chapter focuses on one way of communicating, providing a set of strategies to observe, note, and reflect on context-specific ways of using multiple languages, of sounding, naming, using social media, telling stories, being ironic, and engaging in everyday routines. This approach provides a practical guide without stripping out all the wonder and nuance of language in interaction that originally draws the novice researcher to critical inquiry and makes language relevant to the humans who use it every day. Studying Language in Interaction is not only a practical research guide; it is also a workbook for being in the world in ways that matter, illustrating that any research on language in interaction involves both tricks of the trade and a sustained engagement with humanity.

    With extensive pedagogical resources, this is an ideal text for advanced undergraduate and graduate students of sociolinguistics, intercultural communication, linguistic anthropology, and education who are embarking on fieldwork projects.

    Table of contents


    Chapter 1 Ways of Speaking: A Repertoire Approach

    Chapter 2 Ways of Being Multilingual

    Chapter 3 Ways of Sounding

    Chapter 4 Ways of Naming

    Chapter 5 Ways of Using Social Media

    Chapter 6 Ways of Telling Stories

    Chapter 7 Ways of Being Ironic

    Chapter 8 Ways of Doing the Routine

    Chapter 9 Research as a Way of Being in the World: Communicative Repertoire, Participant-Observation, and Citizen Sociolinguistics


    Betsy Rymes is Professor and Chair of the Educational Linguistics Division at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. Her previous publications include Communicating Beyond Language (Routledge, 2014), Classroom Discourse Analysis (Routledge, 2016), and How We Talk about Language (2020).

    A masterful and beautifully balanced introduction to a wide range of ways of doing & researching language in interaction in contemporary life: unpretentious and accessible yet richly detailed and nuanced. At last, a practical guide that definitively puts the notion of diversity at the heart of the sociolinguistic study of communicative practices. We must all find our way to it & change our ways because of it!

    Alexandra Georgakopoulou-Nunes, Professor of Discourse Analysis & Sociolinguistics, King’s College London