Two Epistemic Stance Markers and Their Significance in an Innovation Process
This paper deals with two epistemic stance markers ‘I think’ and ‘you know’, and how workshop participants can employ such markers in an innovation process. The analysis shows that both epistemic stance markers can be used as resources to reach overall progression of the activity or to reach common ground. However, ‘I think’ is used as a resource by participants to display their individual and personal stance to one or other topic of negotiation during the workshop activity, whereas ‘you know’ is used to further account for some prior utterance or proposition, which initially elicited no response or merely a minimal response from the co-participant(s), or alternatively as a pre-announcement. By doing so, the participant uttering ‘you know’ invites for a shared epistemic stance. Whereas ‘I think’ is a speaker-oriented stance marker, ‘you know’ is a recipient-oriented stance marker. Thus, ‘I think’ is the speaker’s resource to take a relative (i.e. upgrading or downgrading) personal epistemic stance, ‘you know’ is the speaker’s resource to invite the recipient to take a relative (upgraded or downgraded) shared epistemic stance. In some instances ‘words are not enough’, and the objects and they way they are handled by the participants turn out to be pivotal for the outcome of a negotiation sequence. From the temporal progression of the overall workshop activity, it further shows that the frequency with which the interlocutors employ “I think’ in the course of interaction minimizes as the workshop progresses, whereas the frequency of ‘you know’ increases.
Nordica Helsingiensia, 2012, Vol 30, p. 107-131
Epistemic stance, individual stance, shared stance, common ground ,innovation workshops, value network workshops, speaker-oriented stance marker, recipient-oriented stance marker, I think, you know