Prosodic Patterns in English Conversation

Nigel G. Ward

Cambridge University Press, 2019

Without prosody, conversations would be just alternating short speeches: the human element would be lost. This book explains how English speakers use prosody to accomplish things. It catalogs two dozen meaningful patterns used for cueing action, taking turns, making polite suggestions, managing topics, expressing urgency, conveying positive feelings, and so on.

  1. Introduction (audio example)
  2. Bookended Narrow Pitch Regions
  3. Downstep Constructions
  4. Creaky Voice and its Functions
  5. Perspectives on Prosody
  6. Late Pitch Peak and its Functions
  7. Expressing Positive Assessments (audio examples)
  8. Superposition
  9. Methods
  10. From Patterns to Meanings
  11. Turn-Taking Constructions
  12. Topic Management Constructions
  13. Stance-Related Constructions
  14. The Rest of English Prosody
  15. Envoi

Table of Contents

Cover Art (Preliminary)