That's Not What I Meant!:  How Conversational Style Makes or Breaks Relationships
 
 
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That's Not What I Meant!: How Conversational Style Makes or Breaks Relationships [Mass Market Paperback]

Deborah Tannen
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Part pop psychology, part sociology and part anthropology, this book by a linguistics professor at Georgetown University focuses on the uncomfortable moments when a conversation inexplicably breaks down, and suggests how such awkwardness can be avoided. Noting that there exist a plethora of books on public speaking, Tannen instead considers "private speaking," and particularly the "metamessages" we transmitwhat we say, our attitude toward those we speak with, and the specific occasioninvolving such elements as loudness, pitch and intonation. Using scenarios that illustrate communication gaps, Tannen also attempts to show readers how to save their marriages and triumph in job interviews. BOMC alternate. January 17
Copyright 1985 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Tannen, whose field is cross-cultural linguistics, focuses on conversational style rather than psychological content, and explains why good intentions are not enough. We begin all conversations with some expectation of how they will progress. If our expectations differ, unexpected responses seem irrational, and we may accuse each other of being deliberately obstructive. She emphasizes that there are no right or wrong ways to converse, only ways which work or don't work. By recognizing differences in style, and learning to work with them rather than against them, we can avoid misunderstanding. Tannen's writing is lively, she states her case clearly, and provides a fresh look at a subject which concerns us all. Recommended for popular collections. Margaret B. Allen, formerly with Bennington Free Lib., Vt.
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Tannen combines a novelist's ear for the way people speak with a rare power of original analysis ... fascinating Oliver Sacks --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher


Actually, this title caught my eye because it sounds like something I might say. Sometimes I
will make a totally outrageous comment in such a matter-of-fact way that people are completely
taken aback; other times my tone will convey a harshness I absolutely didn't intend, which can
lead to hurt feelings and frustration all around. And though at times I can shrug it off and say
that the world simply isn't ready for my sense of humor, I also had been increasingly aware of
the need to refine my communication style. THAT'S NOT WHAT I MEANT! has definitely helped me
begin to assess how I can better do that. It has shown me how I use unclear language to protect
myself and offers simple, straightforward alternatives so that I can get my point across more
effectively. It's also very enlightening in its explanations of why I find myself reacting
negatively to the subtleties of others' speech. A fascinating, invaluable tool.

Laurie Kahn, Associate Managing Editor --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Inside Flap

Often it's not what you say, but how you say it, that counts. Deborah Tannen, the internationally-acclaimed expert on communication and author of the bestselling YOU JUST DON'T UNDERSTAND, will help you recognize your own conversational style and how it meshes or clashes with the styles of others. Entertaining and informative, everyone who speaks will want to read this gem.

About the Author

Best-selling author Deborah Tannen is University Professor and Professor of Linguistics at Georgetown University. She has also been McGraw Distinguished Lecturer at Princetown University. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From AudioFile

In relationships of all kinds, the words you use can give people the wrong impression: of control when you want to emotionally connect, criticism when you want to help, or anger when you feel afraid or insecure. Worse yet, once these miscommunications occur, a whole new argument can get cranked up about the disconnect between what was said and what it was taken to mean. With respect to the continuum of closeness/distance in particular, Tannen has a grasp of the emotional landscape that goes well beyond her insights about language alone. While the abridgment captures the main ideas of the book, one and a half hours is not nearly enough time with this warmly articulate writer and speaker. T.W. © AudioFile 2001, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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