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‹Speaking› Quotation Marks

Toward a Multimodal Analysis of Quoting Verbatim in English

Martina Lampert

This book offers in-depth qualitative case studies of 70 acts of quoting verbatim performed by 16 US speakers across a range of public settings. While their written versions unequivocally index the other voice via quotation marks, the video data drawn from the internet largely lack any non-verbal cues. Contrary to expectation, the quotations’ verbatimness is hardly ever translated into the gradient media: It neither stands out by vocal parameters (pauses, pitch, or intensity) when analyzed acoustically with Praat; nor are (manual) gestures, shift of gaze or body posture called on to serve as regular discriminating quoting practices. In general, the other voice is effectively found backgrounded, if not suppressed, in its oral performance, unless explicitly introduced by a digital quotative.

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