Aphasia and Open Format Other-Initiation of Repair: Solving Complex Trouble in Conversation

Scott Barnes*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


If a listener uses a token like huh, what, sorry (an “open format other-initiation of repair”) to signal a problem in what the previous speaker has just said, it implies that it is the speaker who is responsible and that they should repair their own talk. But if the speaker is someone with aphasia, they may experience difficulty carrying out self-repair without support from their conversation partners. This article demonstrates how generating repair solutions to open format repair initiations can indeed be difficult for people with aphasia. It then explores how simplifying the design of the troublesome turn can reduce the linguistic burden on speakers with aphasia and involve conversation partners in resolving the trouble. This study adds to knowledge about the effects of aphasia on interaction, open formats, and the interface between action formation and turn design. Data are in Australian English.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)111-127
Number of pages17
JournalResearch on Language and Social Interaction
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2 Apr 2016


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