• That's Not What I Meant

  • The Sociolinguistics of Everyday Conversation - The Modern Scholar
  • By: Professor Deborah Tannen
  • Narrated by: Deborah Tannen
  • Length: 7 hrs and 22 mins
  • Lecture
  • Release date: 09-23-08
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Recorded Books
  • 4 out of 5 stars 4.2 (115 ratings)

Regular price: $49.95

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Publisher's Summary

This series of lectures draws on linguistics, or the scientific study of language, to show the many ways in which language has a profound effect upon human relationships. These lectures address the various aspects and implications of what Professor Tannen calls "conversational style". It also looks at the dynamics of specific situations, such as the workplace and classroom, where the role of conversational style is of particular importance. A person's conversational style includes far more than the words that he or she speaks. Each conversation is composed of contextual cues, unspoken messages, body language, and the rhythms of speech. For the most part, people communicate without a conscious focus on the subtleties of language. Through this course, the complexities of language, and all that language entails, will become more apparent.
©2004 Deborah Tannen (P)2004 Recorded Books
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Mr Conway on 08-17-12

Helpful Perceptions, not Scienctic Study

This is not a book about science, rather it's a book about perceptions. Where this book is presented as Scholarly lecture series it implies that it should be treated as having a basis in factual reality, but this is not what you are receiving. While the work begins with descriptive terms and possible scientific approaches to Sociolinguistics, the lectures work much better as self-help.

The author goes through a variety of elements of conversation which may allow the listener to improve their personal relationships with those around them through adjustments in the speech or by recognizing those issues of others.Those seeking scientific scholarship will be disappointed, those seeking an introduction to Social Linguistics in a non-scientific vocabulary will really enjoy.

The Modern Scholar: He Said/She Said: Women, Men and Language, also by Deborah Tannen, is VERY similar to this series. I would not recommend purchasing both.

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6 of 6 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By Tilley on 10-05-09


If you have read any of Deborah Tannen's popular titles, you will probably enjoy this. It is billed as a series of lectures (boring!) but you could just as easily reframe it as different chapters in an audio book.

Concepts are explained simply and clearly. It is quite accessable to the lay person, because there isn't an assumed level of knowledge.

Having read some previous titles by the same author, several vignettes were familiar, but it was quite amusing/entertaining to hear them read aloud. (eg the story about the pediatrician talking to the little girl.)

There is also an accompanying booklet to download. If you are considering downloading this title, the accompanying booklet gives a rough idea of what you can expect. It is very helpful if you want to follow up any of the authors cited.

Would highly recommend for people with a general interest in communication, or linguistics.

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7 of 9 people found this review helpful

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