Interaction and Empathy as Elements of Narrative Strategies in the Russian CliPS Corpus
This paper focuses on evaluation of discourse abilities of speakers with brain damage: people with dynamic aphasia (PWA(d)) and right hemisphere damage (RHD) as compared to healthy speakers of Russian language. The study is based on the material from the Russian CliPS corpus that contains retellings of the Pear Film produced by PWA and RHD, as well as neurologically healthy controls. The nature of the narratives in the corpus allows for a comparative investigation of discourse on the level of micro-structure (grammatical and lexical phenomena) and on the macro level: narrative structure, coherence and cohesion, interactional patterns and narrative discourse strategies. In this paper we present results of the comparative analysis of some macro level discourse strategies: the way interaction and empathy are realized in the stories by PWA(d), RHD and healthy speakers. We have found significantly higher numbers of attitude expression markers, as well as significantly lower numbers of cognitive difficulties markers, in healthy speakers as compared to PWA(d). These results support what is known about difficulties that PWA(d) demonstrate in discourse production tasks. While PWA(d) use interactive markers to get a break from keeping with the story plan, they avoid using epistemic predicates whose subjects are the story characters. We also present qualitative analysis of the discourse strategies of healthy speakers.