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Book: Prosody in Practice

Chapter: What does Prosody do in Human Communication?: Speaking and Listening

DOI: 10.1558/equinox.40466


Here, we examine how speakers and listeners use prosodic cues to convey and understand various types of exchanges: discoursal and conversational, and across a range of sociolinguistic, situational and stylistic contexts. Sample contexts are natural conversation and monologue, news and documentary broadcasts and oral advertising (with data from the sources noted in 4.3. above), with a sidebar look at the representation of prosodic behaviours in printed texts. The chapter also explains the ways in which speakers’ prosody contributes to their identity, whether self- or other-perceived, and how prosodic breakdown in atypical speech affects identity cues.

Chapter Contributors

  • Joan Rahilly ( - ehehjrah) 'Queen's University Belfast'