Frames and mental maps as mediating structures between dialoguing minds

The data used for this study stem from the MuSKA (Multimodal Speech and Kinesic Action) Corpus collected in the Natural Media Lab, and combine audio, video and motion-capture data streams. The analysis focused on selected sequences of recorded German conversations, in which dyads of participants perform the task of jointly planning an Interrail tour through Europe. This study explores how coverbal gestures may function as physically articulated entry points to frames and mental maps, thus evoking experientially correlated elements and activating larger networks of encyclopedic knowledge and subjective associations. Findings suggest that diagrams and frame structures may not only motivate gestural portrayals and guide their interpretation, but also function as mediating structures enhancing mutual understanding between interlocutors.


  • Mittelberg, Irene & Rekittke, Linn-Marlen (to appear). Kognitiv-aktionale Strukturen und Praktiken multimodaler Bedeutungskonstitution. Frames und Diagramme im dialogischen Aushandeln von Reiserouten. Zeitschrift für Gesprächsforschung - Online-Zeitschrift zur verbalen Interaktion. Sonderheft zum Thema ‘Bedeutungskonstitution in Gesprächen: Interaktionale und kognitive Aspekte’, ed. by A. Ziem & R. Mroczynski.