Informations and abstract
Keywords: Legal Language; Legal Sociolinguistics; Spoken Discourse in Courtroom Trials.
The paper offers an overview of some linguistic, communicative and interactional occurrences in the minutes of criminal court hearings, transcribed from audio recordings. The analysed transcripts represent about 16 hours of speech by Italian speakers and all minutes are from Tuscany. After some preliminary considerations relating to the transcription of texts, the work focuses on the variational aspects linked to the relationship between language and dialect, as well as between legal language and general language. Next, it offers reflections about the types of conversation and the interactional strategies employed in a court room, this is a place in which one needs to have good communicative competence if one is to participate in the interaction. Finally, it seeks to prove that transcripts of hearings should be considered real legal texts, although they do feature some specific aspects that are by no means negligible.