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02.05.2017 14:51 Alter: 1 year
Kategorie: Pragmatik-intern


Vorträge von Henrike Helmer, Jörg Zinken und Konstanze Marx

  • Henrike Helmer: German x heißt y ('x means/is y'): Strengthening intersubjectivity by definitions. Intersubjectivity in Action Conference 2017, Helsinki, 11.-13.5.2017.

Abstract: Definitions and explanations are a means in interaction for ensuring understanding and for preventing or addressing misunderstanding (cf. Burska 1991, Harren 2009, Temmerman 2009, Deppermann 2016). This paper deals with the construction x heißt y ('x means/is y') as a format for definitions in German. Using this construction, speakers frequently not only define unknown terms, but also explain how specific terms are to be interpreted for the practical purposes of the current situation.

Equating two terms or concepts in the x heißt y format, speakers can substitute an unknown term with an (often grammatically correlated) term that other participants might know. This is the case especially for foreign words, technical terms or abbreviations. Intersubjectivity is then developed in the sense that the formerly unknown term can be used subsequently.

At other times, turns formatted like definitions are rather descriptive explanations: in such cases, x heißt y is not a general definition of x, but is targeted to the specific verbal and situational context (e.g. "optimieren heißt knapp kalkulieren", 'to optimize means to calculate tightly'). Rather than defining the term, each construct indicates a certain meaning other participants need to understand in order to follow the current interaction. However, these definitions are not (supposed to be) universally valid, but are bound to that very situation. In these cases, intersubjectivity is developed not only by providing an explanation of concepts, but often also by indicating an explanation of the speaker’s intention.

The collection of about 100 cases of x heißt y in German stems from interactions in informal and institutional settings, which are available on The data are analysed using an interactional linguistic approach that also takes into account multimodal aspects.

  • Jörg Zinken: Meaning for local purposes: The project "Interactive constitution of meaning". Intersubjectivity in Action Conference 2017, Helsinki, 11.-13.5.2017.

Abstract: "All actual life is encounter", according to the theologian-philosopher Martin Buber (2008 [1923]).  But while our "primary intersubjectivity" (e.g., Trevarthen 1979) predisposes us to find meaning in encounters, meaning also has to be achieved, step by step, through and for the social situation at hand.  We present a new project at the IDS Mannheim, which deals with practices for the constitution of meaning in interaction. As research on natural social interaction has shown abundantly, interactive turn-taking provides for the casual display of locally relevant meaning and understanding on a running basis (e.g., Heritage 1984).  Furthermore, speakers may repair troubles of understanding, and thus "defend" intersubjectivity (Schegloff 1992).  However, "meaning talk" can also be the main business of some stretch of interaction, which may aim not so much to defend as to “transform” intersubjectivity: to extend the world that is mutually understood.  Examples of activities that can constitute the meaning of forms (lexical concepts, turns, or multi-modal moves) for some situation include formulations, definitions, and exemplifications.  We ask about the local contexts, functions, and practices of such meaning constitution (beyond repair); the lexical and constructional verbal resources systematically implicated in these activities; and the multimodal organization of situations in which meaning becomes the business of interaction.  Our common methodological ground is sequential analysis as practiced in Conversation Analysis, and the exploratory accumulation of collections based on such analysis.  Data are video- and audio-recordings of informal, institutional, and public interactions in German. 

  • Konstanze Marx: Wellen des Hasses oder doch nur Schaumkronen? Eine linguistische Perspektive auf Shitstorms im Social Web. Leibniz-Lektionen. Berlin, 11. Mai 2017.

Abstract: Was haben Renate Künast, Til Schweiger und Katja Riemann gemeinsam? Sie und viele weitere Personen des öffentlichen Lebens sind bereits Zielpersonen eines sogenannten Shitstorms gewesen. Es handelt sich hierbei einer Wörterbuchdefinition zufolge um einen "virtuellen Sturm (man könnte auch Flut sagen) der Entrüstung." Diese Entrüstung scheint zunächst kollektiv, weil sie als Auffassung einer homogenen Masse medial repräsentiert wird. Eine linguistische Analyse aber offenbart ein differenziertes Bild auf eine neue Form des Diskurses, der jedoch solange unentdeckt bleibt, wie er als "Shitstorm" etikettiert wird. Im Vortrag wird die Vielgestaltigkeit des diskursiven Ereignisses diskutiert, was eine Thematisierung von Abgrenzungskriterien für Hate Speech, Cybermobbing, Beleidigungen und Kritik integriert.

  • Konstanze Marx: Triforce: Von der Macht der Sprache. Kinderuni. Technoseum Mannheim, 6. Mai 2017.
  • Konstanze Marx: Ich hab nichts zu verbergen! Soziale Medien als Sinnbild einer offenen Gesellschaft. Ringvorlesung "Offene Gesellschaft". Hochschule Biberach, 3. Mai 2017.