What does this structure mean: " '<Word A>' <Word A> "?

I am wondering that why American people (from movies I've seen) usually double the words they say, something like this: "<word A>" <word A> (the former is always put between two quotation marks as I've watched the subtitles). For example:

I; A: Who are you?

B: I'm a friend of Lois'.

A: A boyfriend, a "friend" friend or just a friend.

II; Perry: Clark, weren't you assigned to this piece too? I was kind of under the impression that you two were permanent partners.

Clark: Well, we're not "permanent" permanent partners yet, Chief.

Lois: No, that would be a big step, Chief.

Clark: The kind of thing that a person would have to think through.(Here Clark and Lois sort of have special feelings to each other)

III; Victor: So Phoebe says you're a handyman.

Leo: Actually, no, I'm a doctor, I mean, not a "doctor" doctor, per se. I'm more of, like, a counsellor doctor. (Leo, from Charmed, is a whitelighter. He can heal injuries by magic.)

1 Answer

  • Anonymous
    6 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    I don´t thinks i an English structure or and exclusive English idiomatic rhetorical figure. It´s , as well, used in Spanish, Italian an other languages."not a "doctor" doctor" (colloquial) means "not really a doctor", "permanent" permanent partners yet. "not permanent partners (using the strict definition of a partnership), yet , but we are very close to become partners.

    "She is not a "prostitute" prostitute (full time), but yes, she, from time to time, works as a prostitute.

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