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On-line version ISSN 2317-1782


KRUEL, Cristina Saling; RECHIA, Inaê Costa; OLIVEIRA, Luciéle Dias  and  SOUZA, Ana Paula Ramos de. Enunciative categories in the description of language functioning of mothers and infants aged 1-4 months. CoDAS [online]. 2016, vol.28, n.3, pp.244-251. ISSN 2317-1782.


To present categories which explain the language functioning between infants and their mothers from Benveniste’s concept of semiotic system, and verify whether such categories can be described numerically.


Four mother-infant dyads were monitored in three stages. The first study consisted of a qualitative analysis of the transcribed video recordings conducted in each stage. We intended to identify the enunciative principles associated with the relationship between the semiotic system of the infant’s body and their mother’s language, namely, the principles of interpretancy and homology. The other study was conducted by means of a descriptive numerical analysis of the enunciative categories and the infant caregiver scale of behavior, using the ELAN software (EUDICO Linguistic Anotador).


Mutuality in mother-infant interactions was observed in most of the scenes analyzed. Productive enunciative categories demonstrated in the infant’s demand/mother’s interpretation relation was identified in homology and interpretancy. It was also possible to use these categories to describe the mother-infant interactions numerically. In addition, other categories emerged because there are other subtypes of maternal productions not directly related to infant demand. This shows that infants are exposed to language of heterogeneous characteristics.


The concept of semiotic system allowed the proposition of language functioning categories identifiable in the mother-infant relationship. Such categories were described numerically.

Keywords : Language Development; Child Development; Maternal Behavior; Language Assessment; Early Detection.

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