Prosody and the aprosodias

Donna C. Tippett, Elliott Ross

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Ordinary comments such as these reveal the profound understanding that human communication is more than semantics and syntax. Pitch, loudness, stress on syllables and words, and rate of speech, collectively known as prosody, infuse meaning into spoken messages and convey emotional information. It is not only what one says, but how one says it that matters. In fact, if the affective-prosodic message is not consistent with the language content, listeners will believe the affective intention (Ackerman, 1983; Bowers, Coslett, Bauer, Speedie, & Heilman, 1987; Mehrabian, 2007). The ability to recognize affective intention is vital for accurate perception of a communication partner’s emotional state and generation of an appropriate response to this circumstance. Misinterpretation of affective intention can limit interpersonal relationships and result in social isolation (Blonder, Pettigrew, & Kryscio, 2012). In this chapter, the taxonomy and neurology of prosody, the aprosodic syndromes and their assessment, treatment, and functional implications will be discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Handbook of Adult Language Disorders
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages12
ISBN (Electronic)9781317498353
ISBN (Print)9781848726857
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions(all)
  • Medicine(all)
  • Psychology(all)


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