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  • 1.
    Byrman, Gunilla
    et al.
    Linnéuniversitetet.
    Ström, Peter
    Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of language studies.
    Djävulen sitter i detaljerna: Om citatteckenbruk i texter hos Polisen och socialtjänsten2019In: Sakprosa, ISSN 1502-6000, E-ISSN 1891-5108, Vol. 11, no 5Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The study examines the use of quotation marks in investigations by the police and the social services’ child care. The purpose is to illustrate the function of the quotation marks and possible interpretations of the texts in the light of the quotation marks. This is studied in the different types of discourse presentation: direct and indirect speech and narration. The starting point for the study is that quotation marks are a meaning-making resource, and that their usage plays a role in the functionality of texts in the contexts where they are used. Another purpose is to contribute to terminology development within the research field. The material consists of 20 investigative texts. A relevant purpose of these texts is to convey information obtained during conversations and interviews, and the texts thus represent a discourse that exists in the borderland between spoken and written language. The results of the study are interpreted with the help of concepts such as intertextuality and recontextualization. The analyses show that the primary function of quotation marks can be linked to the activity of retelling, but in the child care investigations in particular, the use of quotation marks is heterogeneous, and the functions of this typographical resource appear to be unclear. Another finding is that 50 percent of all quotation marks in the texts are unconventional and are not described in writing guidelines. This finding highlights the need for a conceptual apparatus which is appropriate for understanding and describing quotation marks as a meaning-making resource. Quotation marks are studied primarily in literary stylistics, but this study shows that quotation marks as a textual and meaning-making resource are also a relevant topic in research on non-fiction prose.

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