Book Chapter

“I really don’t know because I’m stupid”: Unpacking suggestibility in investigative interviews

I Nakane

Pragmatics and Beyond New Series | Pragmatics && Series | Benjamins - John Benjamins Publishing Company | Published : 2018


This chapter examines how an interviewee with borderline intellectual functioning reversed his denial and gave a false confession in investigative interviews conducted by a prosecutor in a murder case in Japan. While the interviewing prosecutor's varying approaches to questioning are likely to have contributed to the interviewee's changing statements, the analysis also suggests that the interviewer either ignored or was unaware of the subtle cues of problematic communication, especially the ways in which the interviewee used the phrases wakaranai (I don't know) and gomennasai (I am sorry), as well as his long silences. It is argued that such miscommunication often arose because of the interl..

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University of Melbourne Researchers