Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Short Communication

Intrinsic misalignment in dialogue: Why there is no unique context in a conversation

Jonathan Ginzburg a1
a1 Dept of Computer Science, King's College London, London WC2R 2LS, United Kingdom


Pickering & Garrod's (P&G's) claim that conversationalists do not explicitly keep track of their interlocuters' information states is important. Nonetheless, via alignment, they seem to create a virtually symmetrical view of the information states of speaker and addressee – a key component of their accounts of collaborative utterances and of self-monitoring. As I show, there is significant evidence for intrinsic contextual misalignment between conversationalists that can persist across turns.