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Multi-modal corpus pragmatics: The case of active listenership

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Dawn Knight


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This chapter examines how a multi-modal corpus analysis can be employed to facilitate the exploration of pragmatic categories in discourse. Using as an example the category of active listenership in conversation, it focuses on the way in which descriptions of pragmatic functions have to be reconsidered in the light of accompanying gestures. The gestures that are examined are movements of the head that occur when the hearer signals active listenership. Drawing on a multi-modal corpus of an academic supervision session, different existing categorisations of backchannels will be discussed in terms of their validity and applicability to multi-modal data. The paper ends with a brief exploration of the place of multi-modal corpora in pragmatics research.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Knight D, Adolphs S

Editor(s): Romeo-Trillo, J.

Series Editor(s): Kecskes, I.

Publication type: Book Chapter

Publication status: Published

Book Title: Pragmatics and Corpus Linguistics: A Mutualistic Entente

Year: 2008

Volume: 2

Pages: 175-190

Edition: 1st

Series Title: Mouton Series in Pragmatics

Publisher: Mouton de Gruyter

Place Published: Berlin and New York

Library holdings: Search Newcastle University Library for this item

ISBN: 9783110195804