Focus Movements and the Internal Images of Spoken Discourse

Research output: Working paper


When a speaker spontaneously draws, what is the correlation between visual focus movements over the drawing and focus movements in the discourse? How is the listener's internal image constructed from the spoken discourse? We studied these questions empirically by transcribing spoken language data into intonation units and comparing them to events in the drawing. In our analysis, we employed an image oriented semantics. Several visual processes could then be identified in spoken conversation. A number of small markers, which we named attention movers, played a fundamental role in marking the transition between focuses of attention. And, when building his/her internal image, the listener simply superimposes the lexical images of words and intonation units onto a progressing internal image of the discourse


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Philosophy


  • Cognitive Studies
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 1996
Publication categoryResearch