Direct discourse

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Direct discourse refers to the quoted words of a character given by the narrator.

Contents

Definition

Direct discourse and its counterpart, indirect discourse, both deal with the way a narrator captures the words of a character. Direct discourse makes an effort at mimesis, attempting to represent exactly what a character says--this many times involves narrator commentary in between and surrounding the speech. Sometimes referred to as "direct speech."

Examples

"'You get off early or what?'

'I took off early.'

'Anything the matter?'

'In a way of speaking,' he said and wiped his lips.

'Not cut back?'

'No, no. They got plenty work. I just--'

'Hm?'

'Sethe, you won't like what I'm 'bout to say.'"

-Toni Morrison, Beloved

This passage is an example of direct discourse in its treatment of dialogue. The narrator here gives to the reader in the form of direct quotations from characters.

Critical Debates

{is the term contested, challenged, defined differently, etc.?}

Related Terms

discourse, indirect discourse, free indirect discourse

References

Banfield, Ann. "Narrative Style and the Grammar of Direct and Indirect Speech." Foundations of Language 10 (1973): 1-39.

_____. Unspeakable Sentences. New York: Routledge, 1982.

Blyth, C., S. Recktenwald and J. Wang. "I'm like, 'Say what?!': A New Quotative in American Oral Narrative." American Speech 65 (1990): 215-27.

Coulmas, Florian, ed. Direct and Indirect Speech. (Trends in Linguistics; Studies and Monographs 31). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 1986.

Dahlgren, Marta, and Hugo Todea. "Translation of Fictional Dialogue: A Pragmatic Account." In Anovar/Anosar. Vol. II. Ed. Álvarez and Fernández. Vigo: Servicio de Publicacións da Universidade de Vigo, 1999.

García Landa, José Ángel. "On FID, FDD, DD, ID, FIT, FDT, DT, IT." In García Landa, Vanity Fea 2 Nov. 2009. http://vanityfea.blogspot.com/2009/11/on-fid-fdd-dd-id-fit-fdt-dt-it-question.html


Gilman, Stephen. "Diálogo y estilo en La Celestina." In Gilman, Del Arcipreste de Hita a Pedro Salinas. Salamanca: Ediciones U de Salamanca, 2002. 79-86.

_____. "La palabra hablada y Fortunata y Jacinta." In Gilman, Del Arcipreste de Hita a Pedro Salinas. Salamanca: Ediciones U de Salamanca, 2002. 125-40.

Keen, Susan. Narrative Form.

Martin, Wallace. Recent Theories of Narrative.

Prince, Gerald. Dictionary of Narratology

Rabatel, Alain. "Chapitre 5: Les représentations de la parole intérieure. Monologue intérieur, discours direct et indirect libres, point de vue." In Rabatel, Homo narrans: Pour une analyse énonciative et interactionnelle du récit. Tome 2: Dialogisme et Polyphonie dans le récit. Limoges: Lambert-Lucas, 2009. 451-70.

Ryan, Marie-Laure. “When Je is Un Autre: Fiction, Quotation, and the Performative Analysis.” Poetics Today 2.2 (1981): 127-155.

Sardón Navarro, Isabel M. Sonia. "El lenguaje oral coloquial: comentario lingüistico de un texto literario." In Actas del VII Simposio Nacional de la Federación de Asociaciones de Profesores de Español. Ed. Raquel Noya Beiroa and Ana Luisa Posada Luaces. Lugo: Servicio de Publicaciones, Diputación Provincial de Lugo, 1999.

Spence, Joseph. An Essay On Pope's ODYSSEY: In which Some particular Beauties and Blemishes of that Work are consider'd. Oxford: S. Wilmot, 1726. (Homer; Dialogue; Translation; Poetic diction)

Tannen, Deborah. "Introducing Constructed Dialogue in Greek and American Conversational and Literary Narrative." In Direct and Indirect Speech. Ed. Florian Coulmas. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 1986. 311-32.

_____. "Hearing Voices in Conversation, Fiction, and Mixed Genres." In Linguistics in Context: Connecting Observation and Understanding. Ed. Deborah Tannen. Norwood (NJ): Ablex, 1988.

Toolan, Michael. "Analysing Fictional Dialogue." In Integrational Linguistics: A First Reader. Ed. Roy Harris and George Wolf. Oxford: Elsevier-Pergamon, 1998. 209¬-24.

Vian Herrero, Ana. "La ficción conversacional en el diálogo renacentista." Edad de Oro 7 (1988): 173-86.

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