Language, Speech, and Movement

  • Stanton B. GarnerJr.
Part of the Cognitive Studies in Literature and Performance book series (CSLP)


This chapter (“Language, Speech, Movement”) considers the function of language and verbal performance in the kinesthetic interchange between actors and spectators. Drawing upon the work of cognitive scientists and linguists, it explores two ways that language and speech condition theatrical kinesthesis. The first is through utterance, the kinetic process by which the body moves to produce meaningful sound. The second is through language itself, which—grounded in the body’s sensorimotor capacities—carries its own, linguistically embodied modes of action. In addition to continuing the discussion of Harold Pinter’s The Homecoming begun in Chap.  4, this chapter includes discussions of Eugene O’Neill’s The Emperor Jones, Shakespeare’s King Lear and Macbeth, and Complicite’s immersive theatre production The Encounter, with Simon McBurney.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stanton B. GarnerJr.
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of EnglishUniversity of TennesseeKnoxvilleUSA

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