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Affiliating in Second Position: Response Tokens with Rising Pitch in Danish

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  • Søren Sandager Sørensen
This article examines the use of the Danish response tokens ja (“yes”) and nej (“no”) with rising pitch in everyday interaction in Danish. Ja and nej do more than (dis)confirmation, and the analysis shows that the tokens with rising pitch achieve affiliation in second position in sequences containing displays of affective stance, which is shown to be contrastive with the tokens with level pitch that instead disaffiliate in the same sequences. Turns eliciting the tokens are also often marked with a wide pitch span, but sometimes other prosodic features than pitch are employed to perform a display of affective stance. Eliciting turns often request reconfirmation but can also implement other actions that make ja or nej a relevant response. The affiliation achieved is shown to be similar across both ja and nej when doing a range of actions, such as (dis)confirmation, acceptance, or agreement. Data are in Danish.
Original languageEnglish
JournalResearch on Language and Social Interaction
Pages (from-to)101-125
Publication statusPublished - 2021

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