Reporting and reacting: Concurrent responses to reported speech

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231 Citations (Scopus)


This article uses conversation analysis to investigate reported speech in talk-in-interaction. Beginning with an examination of direct and indirect reported speech, it highlights some of the design features of the former, and the sequential environments in which it occurs. Recent research on direct reported speech in interaction has shown that although it purports to be the accurate replaying of a former locution, speakers can simultaneously convey their assessment of the utterance while reproducing it. This investigation focuses on how speakers implicitly comment on a reported utterance, exploring the design and sequential placement of the device within the ongoing talk. It is found that direct reported speech recurs in making complaints and telling amusing stories. In addition, explicit assessment of the reported utterance is made commonly by the recipient in the next turn, and the reporter often collaborates with the recipient's response by producing a similar one in overlap. Thus, participants react concurrently to the reported utterance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)425-454
Number of pages30
JournalResearch on Language and Social Interaction
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2000


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