Talk and Practical Epistemology: The Social Life of Knowledge in a Caribbean Community
Drawing on the methods of conversation analysis and ethnography, this book sets out to examine the epistemological practices of Indo-Guyanese villagers as these are revealed in their talk and daily conduct. Based on over eighty-five hours of conversation recorded during twelve months of ethnographic fieldwork, the book describes both the social distribution of knowledge and the villagers' methods for distinguishing between fact and fancy, knowledge and belief through close analyses of particular encounters. The various chapters consider uncertainty and expertise in advice-giving, the cultivation of ignorance in an attempt to avoid scandal, and the organization of peer groups through the display of knowledge in the activity of reminiscing local history. An orienting chapter on questions and an appendix provide an introduction to conversation analysis. The book makes a contribution to linguistic anthropology, conversation analysis and cross-cultural pragmatics. The conclusion discusses the implications of the analysis for current understanding of practice, knowledge and social organization in anthropology and neighboring disciplines.
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action advice advice-giving aiyu anthropologists asking aspects Azande Baby Singh Beth Bhatgaon Callander Chapter claims co-participants consider context conversation analysis course discussion display dynamic verbs elaborated epistemic ethnographic evidential examined example exogamy expertise fact formulated Fragment Garfinkel Gigi Gopal Guyana Heritage Indar indexical initial instance interactional invoked involves Jaio John Lambek language game language-game Lindstrom linguistic linguistic anthropology Malsing Miss Manners noted orientation ostensive definition pair Papso participants particular patrilocal group patrilocal residence person practical epistemology produced proto-language Raja recipient reference relation relevant reminiscing repair representationalism respect response Rohan rules rumshop Sacks Satya Schegloff sense sequence Shakir Shama Shan Shanka Sidnell social organization speaker specific speech stance stem form story suggests Sun's talk tell things tion treated turn uncertainty understanding utterance verb village waan Wittgenstein yu gu Zenia