Common ground e gesti. I benefici di un approccio multimodale alla nozione di recipient design / Common ground and gesture. How a multimodal perspective benefits the notion of recipient design

  • Emanuela Campisi
Keywords: Common ground, recipient design, dialogo, gestualità, comunicazione faccia a faccia


The goal of this paper is to analyse the notions of common ground and recipient design, according to which participants in face-to-face conversations adapt their messages to the particular addressee they are facing, based on the knowledge they share (CLARK 1996). These notions are nowadays considered a fundamental principle of communicative interaction; however, when we move from a normative dimension to what actually happens in spontaneous conversations, it is difficult to decide what this means. In fact, experimental data concerning not only speech, but also gestures, show opposite results and have been interpreted as evidence that often speakers do not take common ground into account (HORTON & KEYSAR 1996). However, one may wonder whether these results can be really considered as evidence in favour or against recipient design, or rather they suggest the need to better clarify the notion itself. After reviewing the most influent literature on the topic, I will suggest that the adaptation to the addressee is not a monolithic phenomenon, but a complex network of multimodal strategies, which can differ according to the context of interaction and, therefore, is still in need of further investigation.


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How to Cite
Campisi, E. (2018) “Common ground e gesti. I benefici di un approccio multimodale alla nozione di recipient design / Common ground and gesture. How a multimodal perspective benefits the notion of recipient design”, Rivista Italiana di Filosofia del Linguaggio, 00. Available at: (Accessed: 23October2021).