End of the Auto-confrontation

At the end of the auto-confrontation, Fatima assessed the discussion and her participation. She was not satisfied. She was surprised that she depended on the moderator and that she did not contributed enough. Fatima admitted that she had mental blocks she was not aware of before. For example, she admitted that the activeness of the moderator caused her to lose any interest in the discussion. She also admits that she should have beenmuchmore active although at the end it was really boring. She thought that she should have sent signs of anxiety: It is true, maybe, that I should have said something…to get him to pay attention to two participants and that he should have taken us back to do something. These reflections sound like a kind of confession which surprised us. This episode showed— like the two first episodes, deep divergences of interpretation. These were not disagreements but prolonged misunderstandings enabled by a communication mode that gave the opportunity to maintain them. Fatima who seemed absent, was quite loquacious about her silence in her auto-confrontation, as if this absence reflected a parallel inner lifewhich is there, invisible but palpable, rather than a desertion or even the kind of passive attendance which is so frequent in face-to-face teacher-led discussions.

For Fatima, the emptiness of the map — emptiness of her, was a sign of distress, and of pretended boredom and of anger. For Ahmad, Fatima’s and Rim’s absence in the map is a sign of his failure as a moderator to think that they deserted the discussion. For Judith, the final part of themapwas a sign of brightmoves ofmoderation, not taken into consideration byweak students. Therefore, the different participants in the discussion have nothing to share in order to disagree: they do not knowwhat the other believes andwhat is at stake. Nothing to share? Not exactly! The discussionmap— a persistent inscription of previous discursivemoves, is shared by all, and serves as a conduit for communication, even in the case of prolonged misunderstandings. Why communication can be maintained in this case? What is special in this synchronous mode in comparison with face-to-face modality for which misunderstandings avoid communication?

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