Semiotic Remediation, Conversational Narratives and Aphasia

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


From published works and formal performances of gifted storytellers to mundane reporting of everyday events, narrative discourse is pervasive across cultural—linguistic groups, and the study of narrative has provided rich ground for exploring human cognitive, sociocultural, and communicative practices. Indeed, the sheer pervasiveness of narrative discourse supports, at least in part, Bruner’s (1986) contention that narrative is one of two fundamental ways that humans are wired to organize, and make sense of, experience. Focusing on marked cultural narratives, anthropologists (for example, Basso, 1996; Bauman, 1986) have typically documented the formal organization of narrative performances and analyzed the critical roles narratives can and do play in displaying and building cultural values, categories, and identities. Skillfully told narratives can break through into performance (Hymes, 1981) and command audience attention by evoking the events and atmospheres of a teller’s narrated world and imaginatively transporting both audiences and tellers to other times and places (Labov, 1997). Skilled storytellers wield narrative tellings as cultural tools that convey and construct social, communicative, and personal histories as well as privileged genres and values (for example, Basso, 1996; Shah, 2008). However, in the flow of everyday interactions, many narratives are brief, routine, and unremarkable in their content and their telling.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationExploring Semiotic Remediation as Discourse Practice
EditorsPaul A Prior, Julie A Hengst
PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
Number of pages32
ISBN (Electronic)9780230250628
ISBN (Print)9780230221017
StatePublished - Jan 20 2010


  • hand gesture
  • discourse practice
  • conversational interaction
  • narrate event
  • semiotic resource

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)


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