Analyzing Digital Discourse
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Analyzing Digital Discourse

New Insights and Future Directions

Patricia Bou-Franch, Pilar Garcés-Conejos Blitvich, Patricia Bou-Franch, Pilar Garcés-Conejos Blitvich

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eBook - ePub

Analyzing Digital Discourse

New Insights and Future Directions

Patricia Bou-Franch, Pilar Garcés-Conejos Blitvich, Patricia Bou-Franch, Pilar Garcés-Conejos Blitvich

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À propos de ce livre

This innovative edited collection presents new insights into emerging debates around digital communication practices. It brings together research by leading international experts to examine methods and approaches, multimodality, face and identity, across five thematically organised sections. Its contributors revise current paradigms in view of past, present, and future research and analyse how users deploy the wealth of multimodal resources afforded by digital technologies to undertake tasks and to enact identity. In its concluding section it identifies the ideologies that underpin the construction of digital texts in the social world. This important contribution to digital discourse studies will have interdisciplinary appeal across the fields of linguistics, socio-linguistics, pragmatics, discourse analysis, gender studies, multimodality, media and communication studies.

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Informations

Année
2018
ISBN
9783319926636
Part IIntroduction
© The Author(s) 2019
Patricia Bou-Franch and Pilar Garcés-Conejos Blitvich (eds.)Analyzing Digital Discoursehttps://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-92663-6_1
Begin Abstract

1. Introduction to Analyzing Digital Discourse: New Insights and Future Directions

Pilar Garcés-Conejos Blitvich1 and Patricia Bou-Franch2
(1)
Department of English, University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Charlotte, NC, USA
(2)
Department of English and German Philology, Universitat de ValĂšncia, Valencia, Spain
Pilar Garcés-Conejos Blitvich (Corresponding author)
Patricia Bou-Franch
End Abstract
The aim of this book is to offer new insights and set future directions for the analysis of digital discourse. The analysis of digital discourse lies at the intersection of (non)language resources, society, and technology. Therefore, digital researchers can draw on a range of diverse socially oriented language disciplines, whose methods and research tools may be of use in carrying out empirical research. However, some of these methods and tools may need to be critically assessed and reflectively adapted, and perhaps also expanded and even combined with others to suitably account for the communicative practices that occur in the digital world and their embeddedness within the social world at large. Discourse, in our view, is concerned with “social practice” (Fairclough, 1992, p. 28) rather than language in use, as it was originally—and more narrowly—conceived in 1980s–1990s. Therefore, we view discourse analysis as the study of “the ways people build and manage their social world using various semiotic systems” (Jones, Chik, & Hafner, 2015, p. 3). Put differently, in our view, digital discourse analysis is concerned with how multimodal, multisemiotic resources are employed to enact identities, activities, and ideologies in the digital world, as part of a larger social world (Gee, 2005).
The field of digital discourse analysis, variously called computer -mediated discourse, new media sociolinguistics, or language and digital communication, has been discussed in terms of three waves, since Androutsopoulos (2006), inspired by Herring’s (1996) foundational work, called for “a shift of focus from medium-related to user-related patterns of language use” (p. 421). While studies within the first wave contained mainly descriptive linguistic approaches and were carried out in the 1990s, the 2000s saw the consolidation of a second wave of computer -mediated discourse studies which brought into the picture socially oriented language researchers concerned with linguistic variability, social diversity, issues of identity, and community formation and maintenance: in sum, a collection of studies more specifically concerned with the study of digital social practices (Georgakopoulou, 2006; Herring & Androutsopoulos, 2015). Recent research claims that a third wave should further take into consideration issues of “translocality”, the complex ways in which diverse local practices come together in global spaces (Tagg & Seargeant, 2014), “transmediality”, or how users transcend different media and should move toward incorporating multimodal analyses of the sociocultural practices of computer -mediated communication (CMC) (Androutsopoulos, 2015; Herring, this volume). Further , Georgakopoulou and Spiliotti (2016) recently called for research to develop critical and ethical agendas, thus placing the focus on ideologies about the media and as enacted, challenged, and negotiated in the digital world (Thurlow, 2017a; Thurlow & Mroczek, 2011).
Thus, the present volume is concerned with current debates on digital practices. More specifically, these include adapting current paradigms in view of past, present, and future research (Part II), looking at how users employ the wealth of multimodal resources provided by digital technologies (Part III) to get things done and be certain kinds of people (Part IV) and identifying the ideologies that underpin the construction of digital texts in the social world (Part V).
When it comes to computer -mediated discourse analysis, before we can offer new insights and future directions to move the field forward, it is necessary to first look back and take stock of the work done in the different areas of interest that have emerged over the past 30+ years. This should help us to consider where we stand and, from here, to begin to identify trends and areas that deserve further attention. Tracing the development of the field and indicating future venues for research is precisely one of the main goals of Susan Herring in her chapter titled The Coevolution of Computer -Mediated Communication and Computer -Mediated Discourse Analysis, which constitutes Part II of this book. The rationale behind her study is that the approach she developed for the analysis of digital practices known as computer -mediated discourse analysis (CMDA) was devised for textual interactions. As technologies evolve, however, research methods and paradigms need to evolve too. Thus, the author makes the case for a research move truly concerned with multisemiotic analyses, and she develops and expands the extant CMDA paradigm to open the way in this direction. In doing so, Herring reviews technological advances in the field organized around three historical phases: pre -Web (stand-alone textual clients), Web 1.0, and Web 2.0 technological phases. Each phase is discussed alongside insights gained from computer -mediated discourse studies that analyzed digital interactions therein. In doing so, she further traces the evolution of the CMDA paradigm, as it was modified and expanded to account for the increasing communicative possibilities of each phase.
Along the same lines as Herring , across the board, key scholars in the field of language and digital communication (Georgakopoulou & Spiliotti, 2016; Herring & Androutsopoulos, 2015; Jones et al., 2015; Thurlow, 2017a; Thurlow & Mroczek, 2011) agree that text-based studies, the traditional focus of analysis, need to move forward by incorporating other modes of communication. All human communication is multimodal (Norris, 2004) but digital technologies are almost always, and are becoming increasingly, vastly multimodal by combining writing, images, sounds, and other semiotic modes. Ignoring this fact in our analyses of digital genre practices makes for very partial accounts of communication therein. Thus, we should place “the concepts of multimodality and multisemioticity as central to our current research on language and digital media” (Georgakopoulou & Spiliotti, 2016, p. 3). Consequently, a chapter by Jewitt (2016), included in the handbook these authors coedit, introduces key concepts and tools of multimodal analysis that can be of use to scholars of digital communication and provides guidance on how to collect and transcribe data and on how to analyze single modes and carry out analyses across modes.
Multimodality entered linguistics through the groundbreaking work of Kress and Van Leeuwen in Reading Images (1996) and Multimodal Discourse (2001). Although much of the work in multimodal discourse analysis (for a comprehensive review see O’Halloran, 2013) has been based on Halliday’s systemic functional theory, combining approaches to discourse with multimodal frameworks of communication has occupied center stage in the work of scholars of different persuasions. Among others, Lemke (2...

Table des matiĂšres

  1. Cover
  2. Front Matter
  3. Part I. Introduction
  4. Part II. Past, Present and Future
  5. Part III. Multimodality
  6. Part IV. Face and Identity
  7. Part V. Language and Media Ideologies
  8. Back Matter