Emotional discourses in the courtroom: women’s empowerment work in honour-related trials

Author: Johan Rosquist1
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  • 1 University of Gothenburg, , Sweden
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The article investigates emotional exchanges as manifestations of power through emotional body language. Subtle as well as obvious displays of emotion are related to the macro political renegotiation of power relations taking place out of court in light of the court case. The testimonies of women in trials investigating honour-related crimes include emotional displays of contempt, friendly intimacy, anger and resignation, each connecting to the sociology of emotions theories primarily of Clark, Katriel and Hochschild. These theories are in turn connected to the critical discourse analysis of Fairclough.

When emotions are analysed through the lens of critical discourse analysis as social practices manifested through (body) language, it highlights the significance and implications of emotions as signifiers of change. The empirical study suggests that critical discourse analysis and emotions theories analysing (body) language are both theoretically and empirically interconnected. This lays theoretical as well as methodological foundations for future studies, addressing the connection between emotions, discourse and power.

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  • 1 University of Gothenburg, , Sweden

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