Forms and Multifunctionality of Interruptions and Simultaneous Speaking in Ordinary Talk – proposal of a Universal Model for the Evaluation of Interruptive Speech Sequences

Şaban Köktürk, Emine Öztürk


It has become common within traditional conversational analysis to interpret instances of interventions and simultaneous speaking that regularly occur in natural conversation with the help of objective criteria, mainly from the analysts’ point of view. Only rarely, conversational analysts consider at least taking into consideration the interactants’ point of view; hardly ever are interventions analyzed by strictly putting the participants’ reactions in the center of interest. The present paper will establish a model with which analysts will be able to classify instances of disruptive and simultaneous speech by combining the interactants’ metalinguistic and paralingual signals with objective criteria, however, strictly focusing on the participants’ reactions in a first step and only applying structural parameters if no reactions on the speakers’ side are perceivable. The categories I have developed are based on selected parts of three example conversations of German speakers that have been translated into English for this paper. The final purpose is to postulate a participant-oriented model for classifying interventions which may help to avoid misleading interpretations only based on the analyst’s opinion.

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International Journal of Linguistics  ISSN 1948-5425  Email:

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