Multimodality Talks Series: Interactional ethnography and multimodality: Issues of epistemology, logic of enquiry and analysis

Day:  12 November 2021

Time: 15:00 – 16:30 GMT

Place: online

Speaker: Judith Green, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, University of California, Santa Barbara

In this talk, Professor Judith Green will make transparent how and in what ways, when and where, theoretical perspectives from multimodality have informed Interactional Ethnographic (IE) studies in and across complex and linguistically, socially, and academically diverse educational programs. Interactional Ethnography is an epistemological logic-of-inquiry grounded in theories of culture as a verb; that is, in the making and interactional sociolinguistics. This perspective was initially developed to understand ways of understanding and tracing the developing opportunities for learning in educational spaces and how these spaces support and/or constrain opportunities for learning. As part of this process, the ethnographer engages with, and records the ways that participants in and across times and cycles of activity, interactionally construct (or not), ways of engaging with spoken, visual, and social texts that shape what counts as socially, linguistically, and culturally being accomplished.

By (re)constructing the theoretical and epistemological decisions and actions of the IE researcher(s) in two IE guided studies, one in a medical/dental setting and one in a bilingual setting (Grade 5), Professor Green lays a foundation for a dialogue about how and in what ways IE as a logic-of-inquiry and analyses can inform, and be informed by, theories of multimodality. In the dialogue with participants, Professor Green seeks to provide a ground for identifying what, when and how these two traditions can be brought together to create empirically grounded ways of constructing warranted accounts of the lived experiences of participants in the social spaces.


Judith Green is a Distinguished Professor Emeritus from the University of California, Santa Barbara, Her research focus on developing ways of exploring social, cultural, communicative (discursive) and academic processes constructed in formal and informal educational spaces The following question has underlies her research from a video-enabled ethnographic and discourse analytic research, she and her colleagues frame as Interactional Ethnography: 

How do theories guiding our research shape questions, epistemological decisions and processes that guide our research as we seek deeper theoretically grounded understandings of classes (and other social spaces) as cultures-in-the-making?

*Please note that this talk will be held at different timeslot from our usual meeting, 3-4:30 pm (GMT) due to the time difference.

*Professor Green and UCL team of MULTIMODALITY TALKS will open the live session, consisting of i) the 45 minutes pre-recorded presentation, followed by ii) the live discussion with Professor Green.

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