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Language, Heart, and Mind

Studies at the intersection of emotion and cognition


Edited By Barbara Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk, Valeria Monello and Marco Venuti

A major premise of this book is that language use is critically conditioned by affective content and cognitive factors rather than being a case of objective computation and manipulation of structures. The 21 chapters of this book deals with how language interacts with emotion, and with mind and cognition, from both intralingual and cross-linguistic perspectives. The second major focus is the theoretical framework, best-suited for research relationships between language, cognition, and emotion as well as the effect that emotion has on the conceptualizer who constructs meanings based on language stimuli. Furthermore, the authors investigate how emotion and rational projections of events interact and what their consequences are in the conceptual world, media discourse, and translation.

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21. Creating “Moppa”: Identity Construction and Expressive Meaning (Valeria Monello)


Valeria Monello

Abstract The following paper has two main aims. The first section is devoted to briefly investigating the multimodal construal (Kozloff, 2000; Culpeper, 2001; Pearson, 2007; Bednarek, 2010, 2018) of protagonist Mort/Maura Pfefferman, the transgender “Moppa” in the initial scenes of episode 1 in American TV series Transparent (season 1, Amazon 2014). The second part will expand the analysis by focusing on how multimodal expressive resources (Bednarek, 2010; Machin, 2012; Kress & van Leeuwen, 1996), and the general distinction between emotion talk and emotional talk (Bednarek, 2008, pp. 10–11), contribute to construing Moppa’s temporary expressive identity (Bednarek, 2010) in two emotionally-dense scenes from episode 1 and episode 2 in Transparent season 1. The main assumption is that the way the character’s expressivity is construed in the two emotionally-dense scenes (in particular in the coming out scene which probably represents an important turning point in LGBTQ+ individuals’ lives), may, to some extent, affect the viewers’ perceptions of and decisions on such thorny issues.

Keywords: Multimodality; Expressivity; Characterisation; TV series; Gender identity

This paper forms part of a more extensive research project that aims at developing a new model of analysis from tools provided by different scopes of study, namely Gender Studies and the recent interactions between Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) and Multimodal Analysis (Multimodal Critical Discourse Analysis see Machin & Mayr, 2012). The methodologies provided by Critical Discourse Analysis, which so far have been applied to mass media (press and television) and institutional...

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