What the job interview looks like in the 21st century
Celia Roberts [+]
King's College, London
Language and the Job Interview looks at a relatively untapped area of language and social life: the role of language and interaction in constructing the job interview and how this role produces disadvantage in the linguistically diverse communities of the western world. It relates the specific activity of the job interview to the wider field of institutional discourse and discusses relevant social theories in the light of the data. The volume considers job interviews as key ‘gatekeeping’ encounters within the workplace from two main perspectives: interviews as extreme examples of social evaluation, showing how inferential processes of moment to moment talk in interaction can lead to the ‘small tragedies’ of everyday life; and interviews as a window into social inequality more generally. It illustrates interactional sociolinguistic and linguistic ethnography methodology through the job interview and workplace data and argues for the importance of practical relevance – applying sociolinguistic analysis to educational interventions.