14thAnnual Conference of the International Speech Communication Association

Lyon, France
August 25-29, 2013

The Physiological Use of the Charismatic Voice in Political Speech

Rosario Signorello, Didier Demolin

GIPSA, France

Voice is one of the orators perceivable behaviors that convey traits of charisma. Contemporary leaders, such as politicians, use their voices to shape their message and persuade audiences. The present study analyzes the physiological use of the "charismatic voice" in Italian, French, and Brazilian Portuguese political speech. We investigated the "discourse level" aspects of voice by conducting acoustic analyses on the voice production of political leaders speaking in different communication contexts (formal versus informal) and while addressing different kinds of audiences (interviewers, colleagues, voters). Politicians' physiological speech range profiles were found to be dependent on the communication context, the audience being addressed and the persuasive goal. There thus seems to be a cross-language and cross-cultural trend in common for voice usage in different communication contexts. Orators adapt voice behavior to the context, the audience, and the persuasive goal of communication. The range of acoustic voice correlates will be wider when the discourse must be at its most persuasive.

Full Paper

Bibliographic reference.  Signorello, Rosario / Demolin, Didier (2013): "The physiological use of the charismatic voice in Political speech", In INTERSPEECH-2013, 987-991.