University of Oulu

Haddington, P. & Oittinen, T. (2022). 11. Interactional spaces in stationary, mobile, video-mediated and virtual encounters. In A. Jucker & H. Hausendorf (Ed.), Pragmatics of Space (pp. 317-362). Berlin, Boston: De Gruyter Mouton.

Interactional spaces in stationary, mobile, video-mediated and virtual encounters

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Author: Haddington, Pentti; Oittinen, Tuire
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 7.7 MB)
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Language: English
Published: De Gruyter, 2022
Publish Date: 2023-09-20


In any focused social interaction, people come together, move, and position their bodies with respect to each other, and maintain and change such formations while they interact. Establishing and sustaining such formations makes it possible for them to see and hear others, to show and share objects, and to orient to same features in the environment. Forming copresence and a shared space is core and a precondition to any social interaction. Since the influential work by Adam Kendon (F-formations) and Erving Goffman (participation frameworks, focused encounters, withs) an accumulating body of research has explored — in different interactional settings — the pragmatics of how humans organize themselves spatially for interacting with each other. More recently, Lorenza Mondada (2009) has introduced the term “interactional space” to refer to the dynamic ways in which people not only initiate and establish copresent formations but also continuously (re)organize them with respect to each other, the unfolding activity and material environment. In this chapter, we offer an overview of pragmatics research on spatial arrangements in interaction. We illustrate how people organize their copresence in order to interact with each other in stable, mobile, video-mediated (i.e., distributed) and virtual settings. We explore “interactional space” as a visual phenomenon and thereby focus on situations where participants can (at least partly) see each other.

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ISBN: 978-3-11-069371-3
ISBN Print: 978-3-11-069355-3
Pages: 317 - 362
DOI: 10.1515/9783110693713-011
Host publication: Pragmatics of Space
Host publication editor: Jucker, Andreas H.
Hausendorf, Heiko
Type of Publication: A3 Book chapter
Field of Science: 6121 Languages
Copyright information: © 2022 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston.