Responding

Negotiated Meaning

Perhaps most importantly, when we converse we reap immediate benefit from the ideas of others around us. Thus, conversation serves a broad social function as we strive in our dialogue with others to work out cooperative understanding, or what is sometimes called "negotiated meaning." We extend our understanding by hearing other voices and alternative perspectives, and, in turn, those others benefit from hearing us. Conversation is thus a powerful mechanism for furthering insight.

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Introduction