ERIC Number: EJ891291
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Aug
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Interjections in the Performance of Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice"
O'Connell, Daniel C.; Kowal, Sabine
Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, v39 n4 p285-304 Aug 2010
Three data sets of primary and secondary interjections were compared: (1) the original interjections written into the text of Jane Austen's (1813/1994) novel "Pride and prejudice"; (2) the interjections read aloud in commercial recordings by six professional readers of the entire text of the novel; (3) the interjections spoken by actresses and actors in the film production (Birtwistle and Langton in "Pride and prejudice" [TV Mini-series]. London: BBC TV, 1995) whose script, despite modest selectiveness, adheres most closely of all film versions to Austen's original text. Overall, the respective frequencies of occurrence of interjections were 136 less than 141 less than 398. Of the 136 interjections in Austen's printed text, 96% were attributable to women's roles, particularly Elizabeth Bennet and her mother. The second of these figures (141) is an average across all six readers. Hence, readers added a very modest number of interjections. But the actresses and actors added a large number of interjections. The dramatic oral expressiveness of the film performance is largely carried by and reflected in the actresses' and to a lesser extent in the actors' use of these primary interjections. These findings can well be related to Nubling's ("Zeitschrift fur Semiotik" 26:11-45, 2004, Duden: "Die Grammatik" (pp 573-640). Mannheim: Dudenverlag, 2005) hypothesis of a spectrum of interjectional expressivity. But Ameka's ("J Pragmat" 18:101-118, 1992) linguistic hypothesis that pauses will both precede and follow interjections was once again found to be empirically groundless. A large percentage (96%) of the interjections in the film performance served the function of initializing various units of discourse, either after a pause before articulatory phrases, or before a sentence and/or turn. Both the emotional and initiating functions of interjections are characteristic of conceptual and medial orality rather than of conceptual and medial literacy. Accordingly, their usage throws further light on a theory of spontaneous spoken discourse.
Descriptors: Literature, Novels, Comparative Analysis, Films, Discourse Analysis, Scripts, Oral Language, Theater Arts, Language Usage, Linguistic Theory
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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