Chapter published in:Bonding through Context: Language and interactional alignment in Japanese situated discourse
Edited by Risako Ide and Kaori Hata
[Pragmatics & Beyond New Series 314] 2020
► pp. 17–37
Shifting bonds in suspect interrogations
A focus on person-reference and modality
In this paper I will examine a series of police interrogations in which various “bonding” strategies – typically linguistic “modality” and “person reference” in Japanese – are employed. The prosecution process in Japan is notorious for unduly allowing the police to extend the detention period while various types of ploys and threats can be attempted to make a suspect to confess to the accused crime. Although such “bonding” between a suspect and the police may sound like a misleading characterization, one can expect to find comparable features to what we typically observe in “bonded” relationships. I will examine how the bond between a suspect and interrogators, established in an inhumane environment called daiyō-kangoku ‘police detention cell,’ can be modified in the interrogation process.
Keywords: forensic linguistics, suspect interrogation, wrongful conviction, person reference, modality
Published online: 03 December 2020
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