Publication details [#55751]

Mieroop, Dorien Van De. 2012. The quotative 'he/she says' in interpreted doctor-patient interaction. Interpreting 14 (1) : 92–117.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Language as a subject
Place, Publisher
John Benjamins
Journal DOI


This article examines the different functions of the quotative 'he/she says' in an interpreter's renderings during four medical interviews (Dutch/Russian). First, the quotative is typically used for renderings of doctors' turns, where it serves to signal a switch in the participation framework and to segment long discourse units by the doctor. Second, in some renderings of the patients' turns, the quotative also has a disambiguating function, clarifying the status of the interpretation either as a literal one or as an addition to a previous summary translation. Finally, in both types of interpretation the quotative also has a distancing function. However, the situations in which this function occurs vary: in the case of doctors' turns, distancing occurs when face-threatening or dispreferred information is being given, while in the case of patients' turns, it serves to co-construct the typical asymmetrical doctor-patient relation.