Extra-ordinary in ordinary language
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This study reports an empirical and theoretical investigation of everyday language. It discusses the speech of teachers and pupils in a school classroom, from a 'phenomenological' point of view. In recent years, mutually contradictory phenomenological theories of language have been developed, based upon the works of Schutz and Sartre, whose essentialist readings of Husserl's explorations in consciousness have been trans¬ lated into theories for the description of everyday speech. Garfinkel's 'ethnomethodology' follows Schutz in portraying everyday speakers as sustaining in their talk the appearance of a shared ' intersubjectivity' or social order, which he and they presume to be real. On this "optimistic" view, a social world shared with others is inescapable. Laing's 'existential psychiatry' follows Sartre in portraying everyday speakers as sustaining in their talk the appearance of a unique "subjectivity1 or psychological self, which he and they presume to be real. On this 'pessimistic' view, a social world shared with others is unattainable. In contrast, my approach follows Husserl's attempt to suspend belief in any reality other than that which appears. I aspire thereby to be 'realistic'. My approach throws into relief relations between words which are invisible when attention is focussed on the things to which words refer. I analyse spoken utterances into clauses or quasi-clausal units which I call 'pictures1. Within the speech of a single individual, and more generally, samenesses and differences can be established between pic¬ tures on the basis of grammatical structure (form), and vocabulary (content). In the present study, personal pro¬ nouns have been especially important for this purpose. On this basis 'realms' can be distinguished within everyday speech 'inhabited' by specific personal pronouns, and endowed with stable properties, which it is the task of linguistic phenomenology to investigate.