This combination of cognitive and behavioral perspectives is consistent with Wiemann and Backlund's (1980:188) argument that communication competence is: The ability of an interactant
to choose among available communicative behaviors in order that he (sic) may successfully accomplish his (sic) own interpersonal goals during an encounter while maintaining the face and line of his (sic) fellow interactants
within the constraints of the situation.
For instance, an interactant
may want to come across in an extremely supportive way, as in the following utterances:
As a result, one speaker may start out addressing an interactant
with Y and then--through a turn in the conversation--may gain the upper hand and as a result switch to T both as a reflection and a signal of his or her momentary power over the addressee.
interpersonal element normally added at the end of either a statement or a question to show respect to the interactant
who is normally of a higher status and power than the speaker.
In cases where an interactant
appears to be functioning in more than one subject position like a train passenger travelling on business, the one that seems most salient in the context was selected.
Equally, looking away can express a sense of one's lower status vis-a-vis the other (with primary focus on either the superiority of the other or one's own inferiority: Cairns 2005b, 134-5) and can deny the other the status of interactant
altogether (Cairns 2005b, 135-6).
The study concludes that, although the status-superior interactant
(professor) was occasionally interrupted and corrected, this face-threatening behaviour did not negatively affect the professor's face.
In a further round of coding, comments were identified as concerning female or male interactants
; then concerning the status of the interactant
as a colleague of equal or senior status, a student or technician; and an open category for other emerging data.
When one is being manipulated, one believes that the interactant
shares her interests, when in reality it is the interests of the other interactant
that are secretly being furthered.
Furthermore, Searle (1969) states that each speech act has meaning and an effect on the behavior of the hearer during a conversation since each interactant
reacts to what has been addressed the previous turn.
Positive face refers to the positive self-image of the interactant
, including the desire that this self-image be appreciated and approved of by others.
Once uncertainty is reduced to the extent of determining plausible predictions of behavior of one interactant
, the other interactant
must then choose appropriate responses, from those available as alternatives, to the expected or predicted action or behavior (Berger & Calabrese, 1975).