Research Seminars

Research seminars

Structuring response: Greek etsi in pursuing a response.

Angeliki Balantani (University of Essex)

This conversation-analytic study examines one of the practices that Greek interlocutors use in mobilizing a response from their interlocutors. Stivers & Rossano (2012) have examined the various resources that English interlocutors have to mobilize a response, such as interrogative morphosyntax, interrogative intonation, epistemic expertise on the topic and speaker gaze. Using a corpus of video- and audio-recordings of naturally occurring talk, I address the use of the Greek token etsi as a mobilizing strategy in interaction.

I shall investigate the Greek token etsi in two contexts: in the form ‘assertion + etsi den ine’ as a tag question in the course of developing a line of argument, and in the form etsi with interrogative prosody at TRPs, showing how they are differentially implicated in courses of action.

The analysis presented here, reporting on a part of a larger study on information receipts in Greek everyday interactions, aims to extend the cross-linguistic scope of studies on response-mobilizing features of turn-design and to contribute to the still developing body of literature on pursuit tokens.


Schegloff, E. A. (1980). Preliminaries to Preliminaries: “Can I Ask You a Question?”. Sociological Inquiry, 50(3-4), 104-152.

Stivers, T. & Rossano, F. (2012). Mobilizing Response in Interaction: A Compositional View of Questions. In J.-P. Ruiter (Ed.) Questions: Formal, Functional and Interactional Perspectives (pp. 58-80). Cambridge: CUP.