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Narrative CriminologyUnderstanding Stories of Crime$
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Lois Presser and Sveinung Sandberg

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781479876778

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479876778.001.0001

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Telling Moments

Telling Moments

Narrative Hot Spots in Accounts of Criminal Acts

(p.174) 7 Telling Moments
Narrative Criminology

Patricia E. O’Connor

NYU Press

This chapter explains that most of the prisoners’ autobiographical narratives have hot spots—speakers’ choices of words, scenes and the like. Speakers construct a showcasing of their previous events, which would eventually lead them to examine their past actions. For instance, a prisoner named Kingston used constructed dialogue to create engaging and entertaining scenes. Afterwards, he contemplates his past actions, during which he overtly used metadiscourse. Such a management of discourse shows a speaker at work crafting a narrative and also casting his life experience in the ongoing narratives of others. This method suggests that the presentation of the self can be considered as the reshaping of the self.

Keywords:   prisoners, have hot spots, narratives, constructed dialogue

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