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[Xmca-l] Re: Intonation and Gesture



David, Alex:

Nice clip and commentaries. I wonder, though, what the singer’s gestures would have looked like as she was first learning the piece, and how their qualities might have changed as she practiced. This is obviously of interest to Vygotskians (genetic method, right?), and it has been the object of some inquiry in education (e.g., Goldin-Meadow’s work) as well as in second language learning (including Alex’s work). 

I think this might be something for your students to explore in their investigations of elementary children learning to perform dialogues, David, i.e. not just focusing on how much or how little gestures are used and their relation with prosody but how they might develop, from initial learning through to some kind of “competent” performance (whatever that might mean). Also, could the kids be taught to gesture as a means of mediating dialogue performance?

Adam

Rémi A. van Compernolle
Assistant Professor of Second Language Acquisition & French and Francophone Studies
Department of Modern Languages
Carnegie Mellon University
Baker Hall A60M
412-268-1122



On Apr 7, 2014, at 6:23 PM, Alex Rosborough <alex_rosborough@byu.edu> wrote:

> David,
> 
> Thank you for sharing this and past posts. I'd like to preface this with
> a, "long time listener, first time caller" type of statement... as I was
> only recently (re)added to the list after a multiyear recess.
> 
> I didn't take a deep look at the video but with slow down motion, I think
> your graduate student will see that there are a variety of gestures that
> occur "at the same time" in sync with the conductor (as well as with her
> rhythmic needs) - analogue style, right? So in many cases she IS hitting
> rhythmic beats for HER notes... Look at the final or most important
> "strokes" as David McNeill has termed them. She goes high for intonation
> but then fingers or hand will often hit the most important point (rhythmic
> point) of the phrase (while arm is extended). This is often coupled with a
> "beat" stroke too. Sometimes, she does coordinate with the conductor but
> we can't see the final lower stroke because of the limitations of the
> camera... Unfortunately, the camera person does not seem too intent in
> capturing the entire corporeal manifestation of the singing. What I'm
> quite certain about is that during those down hand beat motions, she and
> the conductor would be coordinated at their stop within fractions of a
> second... We wouldn't be able to tell where they differed unless we break
> it down past 1/10 - 1/40 of a second but other data analysis has shown
> that they would have looked very coordinated, especially in those downward
> strokes.
> 
> So interestingly, it possible that she may be presenting purpose and
> communication for multiple reasons using multiple modalities in an
> embodied and prosodic way (intertwined); including melodic and rhythmic
> expressions as well as the public/private message ensemble - nothing new
> for Vygotsky people :) So her "conflicts" are purposeful as well in
> meeting her needs and are interesting to study - as you noted. I agree
> with you and your grad. Student's observations of the el. ed. children.
> 
> Just some brainstorming - thanks for sharing.
> 
> Alex Rosborough
> Brigham Young University
> 
> 
> 
> On 4/7/14 3:29 PM, "David Kellogg" <dkellogg60@gmail.com> wrote:
> 
>> One of my graduate students has been studying the way in which
>> children use their hands when they speak English.
>> 
>> We started with the observation that fourth and fifth graders will
>> gesture copiously when they speak, but fifth and sixth graders, when
>> you ask them to perform a dialogue in front of the class, will come
>> out and lock their hands behind their backs, apparently to prevent
>> themselves from gesticulating. Sure enough, their delivery is far more
>> flat in intonation. When we ask them to unlock their hands, there is a
>> notable improvement in intonation.
>> 
>> This morning I was looking at Natalie Dessaye rehearsing the mad scene
>> from "Lucia de Lammermoor". She gesticulates a LOT. But you can see
>> that her gesticulations are not at all mad--when her voice has to go
>> high, she puts her hand way over her head. When she has to go low, she
>> places her hand low.
>> 
>> Her "conducting" actually conflicts with that of the conductor,
>> because of course it's melodic and not rhythmic. But it's effective;
>> it produces that exquisite sense of "bloom" in her high notes. It's
>> not exactly what my students are doing, but it's close!
>> 
>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlVKw3_VXv4
>> 
>> David Kellogg
>> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> .
> 
>