Open class repair initiators in a telephone-interpreted asylum screening interview

A study authored by Simo Määttä and me focuses on open class repair initiators in an asylum screening interview (duration 2: 22: 15). The interview took place in Finland, and it was telephone-interpreted between Finnish, language spoken by the officer, and French, language used by the asylum seeker. An open class repair initiator indicates that the entire turn is regarded as problematic and/or that the nature of the problem or the problematic element are not clear. This type of repair initiator indicates that the listener has not heard the turn, has not understood it, or wants to give the impression of not having heard or understood it. Studying this type of repair initiators allows emitting hypotheses concerning the causes of problems of understanding and misunderstandings occurring in telephone-interpreted institutional interaction and to describe the strategies of resolution of these problematic situations. Methodologically, this study falls within the framework of Conversation Analysis, combined with insights form Interpreting Studies and Critical Sociolinguistics.

Reference: Määttä, Simo & Wiklund, Mari (2019): Réparations conversationnelles dans un entretien d’asile interprété par téléphone. Langage et société 166, 161-183 (available online). (The full text is available on Research Gate and