Research Output
‘Don’t be serious, sabai-sabai สบายสบาย’: How Members of an English Conversation Club at a Thai University do Interculturality
  The current investigation explores interculturality by looking at the language practices of a culturally and linguistically diverse group of postgraduate students from China, Japan, Vietnam, Thailand and the Philippines. As members of an English conversation club at a
Thai university, they met over a period of seven months to practise their English speaking skills, and in the process started to form close friendly relations Methodological inspiration draws from linguistic ethnography, which combines insights from discourse analysis and ethnography in order to account for the contextual boundedness and
specificity of findings. Qualitative data consist of audio recordings and transcriptions of naturally occurring data, field notes from participant/non-participant observation, serendipitous interviews and online conversations via the participants’ social networking
Fine-grained analysis of the transcribed spoken data provide evidence showing: first, the participants’ use of cultural difference as a malleable, deployable resource to manage the exigencies of the ongoing talk; and second, the important role that the local setting, in this case a university in Thailand, plays in shaping the interaction. It is suggested that the participants accommodate to local norms and take up linguistic resources available in the place of interaction. This chapter will show what social actors actually do with culture rather than what culture is. It is argued that an effective way to capture the otherwise fleeting moments of interculturality-in-action is through a turn-by-turn analysis of naturally occurring data.

  • Date:

    06 October 2017

  • Publication Status:


  • Library of Congress:

    HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform

  • Dewey Decimal Classification:

    303 Social processes

  • Funders:

    Edinburgh Napier Funded


Victoria, M. (in press). ‘Don’t be serious, sabai-sabai สบายสบาย’: How Members of an English Conversation Club at a Thai University do Interculturality. In Discourse and Interculturality



Interculturality. Discourse Analysis. Habitat Factor English Conversation Club. Intercultural Communication

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