Cultural Historical Approach to Thinking
at the University of Victoria


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Ethics in the Mouth: Features of Discourse in Dentists' Talk about Critical Incidents in their Praxis

The way people talk is contingent, changing from one situation to another, changing, in the narrative, the responsibility of the speaker. In this paper, I identify patterns in dentists' talk about critical incidents that have occurred in their practice. Through a microanalysis of the dentists' speech, I identified discursive features including shifting agency (stance, footing), pauses, broken sentences, and verbal markers of uncertainty. Grounded in cultural historical activity theory, I discuss how ethics is embodied, becoming an inherent part of actions. The results of this study are important for future research that uses interviews in the area of general ethics and discourse analysis.

Ardenghi, D. M., Roth, W.-M., & Pozzer-Ardenghi, L. (manuscript submitted for publication).

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