From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
In linguistics, the term heteroglossia describes the coexistence of distinct varieties within a single linguistic code. The term translates the Russian разноречие [raznorechie] (literally "different-speech-ness"), which was introduced by the Russian linguist Mikhail Bakhtin in his 1934 paper Слово в романе [Slovo v romane], published in English as "Discourse in the Novel."
Bakhtin argues that the power of the novel originates in the coexistence of, and conflict between, different types of speech: the speech of characters, the speech of narrators, and even the speech of the author. He defines heteroglossia as "another's speech in another's language, serving to express authorial intentions but in a refracted way." It is important to note that Bakhtin identifies the direct narrative of the author, rather than dialogue between characters, as the primary location of this conflict.