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Related to Paralinguistics: extralinguistic, nonlinguistic, paralinguistic cues



a branch of linguistics studying sound features that accompany speech but do not pertain to language. Paralinguistics studies, for example, loudness of speech, uncodified variations in intonation, the distribution of pauses, and sounds used to fill pauses, such as mmm … in Russian or “hmm …” in English.

The concept of paralinguistics was introduced in the late 1940’s by the American linguist A. Hill, but Soviet scholars had been investigating paralinguistic phenomena as early as the 1930’s (N. V. Iushmanov’s Extranormal Phonetics). In a broader interpretation, paralinguistics includes kinesics, the study of the facial expressions and gestures in relation to communication. Modern Soviet linguistics devotes a good deal of attention to paralinguistics partly because of the general theoretical interest in the structure and flow of communication. In addition, paralinguistics is studied for the practical reasons of determining how various speech techniques influence listeners and of identifying emotional states through speech.


Nikolaeva, T. M., and Uspenskii, B. A. “Iazykoznanie i paralingvistika.” In the collection Lingvisticheskie issledovaniia po obshchei i slavianskoi tipologii. Moscow, 1966.
Kolshanskii, G. V. Paralingvistika. Moscow, 1974.


References in periodicals archive ?
the right hemisphere processes the affect (often hidden to the unaware) in the paralinguistics, especially the vocalics and lengthy pausings during active speech communication.
Paralinguistics, here, is directly derived from the taxonomy of Fernando Poyatos, who categorizes speech by its primary qualities, qualifiers, differentiators, and alternants.
But it may also be that, given certain coded units, overcoding will analyze these units into more analytical entities, as when, given a word, paralinguistics establishes that different ways of pronouncing it (of a stressing on its various syllables, or of insisting on a particular kind of phonetic emission) correspond to different shades of meaning .