Siblings’ embodied socialization of emotion and moral in conflict situations.

How is talk coordinated with gestures, gaze, body posture and spatial positioning? And how is that, in turn, used as emotional and moral socialization? How is this done in the everyday interaction of Swedish families? And in particular, how is this done in siblings’ interactions?

My thesis is a part of a bigger project that studies how emotion and moral is communicated and embodied in Swedish preschools and in Swedish families. My part of the project lies in the latter setting as I focus specifically on sibling interaction. Conflict situations are at the heart of my research as they are dense with emotional and moral socialization moves and thus provide interesting insights about how families, and siblings in particular, deal with everyday disagreements. I am especially interested in how body posture and spatial positioning is coordinated with talk in conflict situations i.e. how embodied conduct socializes, what is locally understood as, proper moral and emotional behavior.

The study involves a video-ethnography that is carried out in Swedish family homes. I am inspired by CA (conversation analysis), and draw on multimodal interaction analysis (Goodwin, 2000) in combination with theories of language socialization i.e. how language and body are used to socialize into sociocultural norms. A sociocultural perspective is thus adopted to study how embodiment can work as socializing of emotional and moral behavior in sibling interaction.

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