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Accountability in Social Interaction$
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Jeffrey D. Robinson

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190210557

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190210557.001.0001

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The Omnirelevance of Accountability

The Omnirelevance of Accountability

Off-Record Account Solicitations

Chapter:
(p.321) 11 The Omnirelevance of Accountability
Source:
Accountability in Social Interaction
Author(s):

Chase Wesley Raymond

Tanya Stivers

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190210557.003.0011

This chapter builds on the work of Garfinkel and Heritage to argue that when questioners pose a known-answer question concerning a behavior, decision, or opinion for which an account is possible, recipients orient to the relevance of both a confirmation and an account for that conduct. Insofar as the initial confirmation effectively closes the request-for-confirmation sequence, the provision of an account is in a substantially more volunteered context than following a direct request for an account (e.g., after Why questions), which places recipients in a comparatively “coerced” position. Deviant cases—in which interactants decline to provide an account following their confirmation—provide additional evidence for the claim that known-answer requests for confirmation solicit accounts. This argument suggests both that there is a social preference for accounts to be provided for conduct that is presented without explanation, and also that interactants are reticent to overtly request accounts.

Keywords:   conversation analysis, accountability, answer, intersubjectivity, morality, social norm, question, reflexivity, social interaction

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