Television Dramatic Dialogue: A Sociolinguistic Study

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Oxford University Press, Apr 7, 2010 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 272 pages
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When we watch and listen to actors speaking lines that have been written by someone else-a common experience if we watch any television at all-the illusion of "people talking" is strong. These characters are people like us, but they are also different, products of a dramatic imagination, and the talk they exchange is not quite like ours. Television Dramatic Dialogue examines, from an applied sociolinguistic perspective, and with reference to television, the particular kind of "artificial" talk that we know as dialogue: onscreen/on-mike talk delivered by characters as part of dramatic storytelling in a range of fictional and nonfictional TV genres. As well as trying to identify the place which this kind of language occupies in sociolinguistic space, Richardson seeks to understand the conditions of its production by screenwriters and the conditions of its reception by audiences, offering two case studies, one British (Life on Mars) and one American (House).
 

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Contents

Introduction
3
Previous Research
21
What Is TV Dialogue Like?
42
What TV Screenwriters Know about Dialogue
63
What Audiences Know about Dialogue
85
Dialogue as Social Interaction
105
Dialogue Character and Social Cognition
127
Dialogue and Dramatic Meaning Life on Mars
151
House and Snark
169
Conclusion
187
List of Television Shows
198
Notes
219
References
227
Index
237
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About the author (2010)

Kay Richardson is Reader in Communication Studies, School of Politics and Communication Studies University of Liverpool.

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