No time to care? Interactional hurriedness in a Japanese nursing home

Peter Backhaus*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The research presented in this paper is based on audio-recordings from a Japanese care facility. I focus on interactional tempo differences between residents and staff. The analysis concentrates on two interrelated phenomena that can be taken as indications of hurriedness on the part of the care workers: overlaps and turn repetitions. Presenting examples for each of the two, I also show that the staff's hurried performance does not necessarily result in a quicker completion of the care tasks. I go on to reflect on the staff's likely reasons for doing "being in a hurry," arguing that apart from real time pressures, the mere display of hurriedness can become an end in itself.

Original languageEnglish
Article number20180022
JournalLinguistics Vanguard
Issue numbers2
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Japan
  • age
  • eldercare
  • hurriedness
  • institutional interaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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