Metalanguaging and discourse markers in bilingual conversation

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study examines the functions of the bilingual discourse strategy of language alternation in the process of marking boundaries of continuous discourse. The focus is on switched discourse markers - employed, it is argued, to metalanguage the frame of the discourse. The corpus is comprised of audio recordings of over 20 hours of Hebrew-English bilingual conversation. The strategy of language alternation at discourse markers is illustrated, and the switched discourse markers are classified according to Becker's approach to context (1988b) as a source of constraints on text. This classification is then related to the phenomenon of clustering of discourse markers at discourse unit boundaries in both bilingual and monolingual discourse. Finally, cross-linguistic differences in discourse markers are related to a theory of metalanguage. (Discourse analysis, bilingual discourse, discourse markers, languaging, metalanguage, Hebrew/English comparative discourse).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)325-366
Number of pages42
JournalLanguage in Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1994
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Linguistics and Language


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