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Spoken English General Reading List

General texts

McCarthy, M. 1998. Spoken Language and Applied Linguistics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. As with everything McCarthy writes, this is informative and entertaining. Ranges wider than this course, but it’s all relevant, and all based on the CANCODE corpus. Schiffrin, D. 1994. Approaches to Discourse. Oxford: Blackwell. On a course like this, it’s hard to pin down a single book that covers everything, but this has a lot to offer. Its coverage is wide (and takes in some of the Discourse Analysis course), it gives you a flavour of analysis, and it includes useful examples of research. Thornbury, S. and Slade, D. 2006. Conversation: From Description to Pedagogy. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. This focuses on analytical approaches other than the ones on the module, but it draws very useful links between analysing conversation and teaching. Chapters 4 and 5 are well worth reading and could help you a lot when you’re thinking about your analysis. van Lier, L. 1996. Interaction in the Language Curriculum. London: Longman. A book you should certainly read. It covers a much wider field than this course and focuses on the classroom, but it makes interesting connections and is very readable.

Guides to analysis

Cameron, D. 2001. Working with Spoken Discourse. London: Sage. A very accessible book with good coverage. Cameron always makes interesting reading, and even though she goes outside our territory, there are some useful things to explore. Richards, K. 2003. Qualitative Inquiry in TESOL. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. [Chapter 4] Although only chapter 4 is relevant to this course (the rest will be relevant when you do your research methods course and get stuck into your dissertation), it’s the only approach I know that’s graded, so you should be able to work through the different levels. Schegloff, E. A. 2007. Sequence Organization in Interaction: A Primer in Conversation Analysis, Volume 1. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. The definitive introduction to analysis. If you’re serious about conversation analysis (CA) it’s an essential text. ten Have, P. 1998. Doing Conversation Analysis: A Practical Guide (2nd edn). London: Sage. An excellent introduction to doing CA that is wider in scope than Schegloff, but less detailed analytically. As a practical guide, it’s the best around.


Boden, D. 1994. The Business of Talk. Cambridge: Polity Press. If you work in an ESP context and are interested in business and business meetings, this is well worth looking at. Carter, R. and McCarthy, M. 1997. Exploring Spoken English. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Extracts from the CANCODE corpus with commentaries and some very useful further reading. A book you can read, use, or plunder for your advanced students. Well worth exploring. Fitch, K. L. and Sanders, R. E. 2005. Handbook of Language and Social Interaction. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. This is a heavyweight collection but there are some excellent and very relevant papers here written by leaders in their fields. When you’ve decided on your analytical approach for the assignment, it would be worth checking out. Gardner, R. and Wagner, J. (eds). 2004. Second Language Conversations. London: Continuum. This is heavyweight stuff from first to last, but if you want to see what conversation analysis can bring to second language acquisition, this is the collection to consult. Hutchby, I. and Wooffitt, R. 2008. Conversation Analysis (2nd edn). London: Polity Press. If you’re interested in what conversation analysis can reveal but don’t want to pursue that analytical line, this is a better bet than ten Have. It also makes an excellent companion to ten Have and is a very readable book. Richards, K. 2006. Language and Professional Identity. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. You don’t need to read this, but it covers a number of topics (argument, humour) in the context of professional talk. Richards, K. and Seedhouse, P. (eds). 2005. Applying Conversation Analysis. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Not all of the papers are relevant to our field, but many are, and the foreword and introduction are relevant to the general issues of applying this sort of analysis. Seedhouse, P. 2004. The Interactional Architecture of the Language Classroom: A Conversation Analysis Perspective. Oxford: Blackwell. A prizewinning book that is essential reading for anyone interested in classroom interaction. It also provides an excellent introduction to conversation analysis. Walsh, S. 2006. Investigating Classroom Discourse. London: Routledge. An excellent introduction to this area, with broad coverage and some interesting data. Young, R. F. 2008. Language and Interaction: An Advanced Resource Book. London: Routledge. This is an excellent resource book, though it ranges much wider than our module. You should at least try to have a look at the sections on talk in context.