Conspiracy, complaints, and fraud: the language of reasons

What makes someone on Reddit posting about conspiracies sound particularly paranoid? How do corporations detect employees committing fraud? When consumers file complaints against financial institutions, how do they tell their stories? Rationality and causation are themes that unite these three questions. Individuals differ by when they offer reasons, how complex these reasons are, and how they are judged afterwards. In this talk, I’ll focus primarily on differences across individuals and contexts in terms of the use of the word “because”, demonstrating the important role emotion has to play in the moments when people are displaying reasoning. Methods include techniques from sociolinguistics, corpus linguistics, and computational linguistics.