Accepted Paper:

Insights produced in talk-in-interaction: what discursive psychology may offer anthropology  
Karen Mogendorff

Paper short abstract:

This paper explores how discursive psychology methodology (DP) may enrich anthropological insights and may help to account for and substantiate anthropological knowledge claims that are produced intersubjectively.

Paper long abstract:

Discursive psychology (DP) is a young methodology that aims to better understand what is going on in complex social environments by studying how informants discursively manage stakes, interests and dilemmas in face-to-face encounters with other informants or the researcher. So far, discursive psychology and anthropological methodology are rarely combined.

This paper explores what discursive psychology with its focus on what informants do and achieve with talk-in-interaction may contribute to anthropological inquiry. It focuses on how discursive psychology may deepen anthropology's understanding of processes such as the production and reproduction of social hierarchies, e.g. by drawing upon sociocultural inferences and the structural affordances of language in use. I also investigate how discursive psychology may be deployed to substantiate and account for anthropological knowledge claims rooted in inter-subjectivity, e.g. by deploying the participants' proof principle.

The paper is based on my experiences with a study I conducted in publicly contested plant (genomics) science in staple crops and that draws upon anthropology and discursive psychology. The focus of this study is on how Dutch plant experts discursively relate to human and non-human Others to account for how they deploy, shelve or disregard 'lay' and user perspectives in (publicly contested) plant technology development.

Panel P010
Applied anthropology as a source of innovation (EASA Applied Anthropology Network)