Toth [Abstract]

Identity, small stories and interpretative repertoires in research interviews. An account of market researchers’ discursive positioning strategies [Full text]

Cosmin Toth [1]

AbstractMy main purpose in this paper is to illustrate how participants in a research interview occasioned conversation make use of two important discursive devices, namely: small stories and interpretative repertoires for positioning during interaction in order to foster certain situated identity claims. The premises I work with in this paper are that identity is a practiced situated accomplishment, that small stories are devices employed frequently for identity work that are no less important than extended autobiographical expositions, and that interpretative repertoires are practiced ways of speaking that allow participants to manage their positions in certain ways. Moreover, I will try to show that positioning by means of small stories and interpretative repertoires should be understood in direct relation with the identities and other membership categories made relevant by the interviewer. When participants’ positions are conflicting or miss-aligned, a more pronounced identity work is employed on the part of the interviewee, sustained by certain repertoires’ management strategies: alternation, nuancing, or rejecting certain repertoires.

Keywords: Small story, interpretative repertoires, identity, research interview

[1] Faculty of Sociology and Social Work, University of Bucharest, Romania,