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ERIC Number: ED359752
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992-Apr
Pages: 11
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
The Notion of Coercion in Courtroom Questioning.
Bulow-Moller, Anne Marie
To account for coercive force in questions posed by counsel to defendants and witnesses, several levels of speech must be addressed. Forensic linguistics literature discusses the scale of coerciveness as reflected in the syntactic form of the questions. It is argued that this type of analysis fails to account for the inferences made by hearers (i.e., judge and jury) and that syntactically coercive questions can be highly cooperative and vice versa. An analysis of the televised mock trial of Lee Harvey Oswald showed that the most coercive forces were found not so much at the syntactic level as at the pragmatic, situation-bound level, with control strategies isolated. On the surface, courtroom evidence consists of facts but in practice, facts are produced under syntactic and pragmatic coercion because they are tailored to the needs of the real addressee, the judge and jury. (JP)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A