Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

M.A. in Modern Languages


Modern Languages

First Advisor

Allison Burkette

Second Advisor

Felice Coles

Third Advisor

Vance Schaefer

Relational Format



The present study examines the stance-taking measures of a native speaker director in a conference call, focusing on social contexts where foreign speakers are also involved. The transcript used in this study is comprised of a global departmental team meeting call from a multinational company based in Austin, TX. Subjects are native and nonnative co-workers or specialists in the field of home vacation rental and a native director. The analysis aims at finding what different stance-taking measures are enacted by the director throughout this conference call, what linguistic strategies are used to claim authority, and whether different strategies or stances are used towards nonnative speakers. Primarily, this study intended to address features of foreigner talk; however, no strong indications of usage of this register were found. With the purpose of accounting for style-shifting and linguistic strategies, the quantitative analysis will look at the frequency distribution of non-contracted forms for evidence of elision avoidance, and verify whether the director uses careful articulation by analyzing the number of words used per minute. The qualitative analysis will explore lexical choices, stress on both content and function words, and stance-taking measures used towards native and nonnative participants. The objective of this study is to understand how authority is expressed and how language and stance are used as tools for claiming and maintaining authority in a setting where the director does not have any visual contact with the participants.


Emphasis: Linguistics

Included in

Linguistics Commons



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