Schegloff Media Archive clips for:
Emanuel A. Schegloff, (1990), “On the organization of sequences as a source of ‘coherence’ in talk-in-interaction”, In Conversational Organization and its Development (Bruce Dorval, ed.), Norwood, NJ, Ablex, pp. 51–77.
In the course of the discussion which follows I want to display the utility of relevance of the “sequence” as another candidate type of unit, the practices of which can underlie the production of clumps of talk. The organization of sequences is an organization of action, action accomplished through talk-in-interaction, which can provide to a. spate of conduct coherence and order which is analytically distinct from the notion of topic. I intend here to explore in an at least sketchy way the structure of a moderately extended sequence of talk in interaction. Within an ongoing program. of research in the organization of talk-in-interaction, the treatment of this spate of talk is another in a series of accounts designed to exhibit a range. of ways in which long stretches of talk can be best understood as orderly expansions or elaborations of a single underlying unit of sequence construction. For the purposes of this chapter. and its. central theme, I choose this presentational track, and this bit of conversation, to make two major points: first, that the “sequence structure”of a spate. of talk and its topical aspect or structure are analytically distinct and can be empirically at least partially independent; and second, that the sequence structure itself can provide for the organizational coherence of the talk. But I have other purposes as well which this fragment will allow us to explore. A third theme is to see how, even when misunderstandings and trouble arise, these can be coherently shaped by sequence structure in conversation. Finally, and in the service of other aims, I hope to engage in an exercise in bringing past work on the analysis of conversational interaction to bear on this singular episode of talk, for its capacity to elucidate single episodes is one important criterion of the relevance and pay-off of this mode of analysis (cf. Schegloff, 1987a).