Doria Ragland's royal introduction discussed by experts
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Doria Ragland, 66, has lived a quiet and private life until now. She was only heard speaking once briefly during her daughter Meghan Markle’s podcast on Spotify. But now the mother of one has appeared on “Harry & Meghan” on Netflix, offering several interviews talking about her daughter’s experiences since marrying Prince Harry.
Judi James, a professional body language expert and voice analyst, spoke to Express.co.uk to offer her expert opinion on Doria’s voice when she speaks. She claimed: “Doria is so much in ‘Mommy’ mode. Her voice is set at a higher pitch as though she is talking to a child.”
When Meghan featured Doria briefly on her podcast “Archetypes”, she received a FaceTime call from her mother. Judi added: “Meghan immediately modified her softer, lower, more soothing pitch that she uses on her podcast to mirror and match her mother’s mother/child energy.
“Meghan’s ‘Hey mommy’ shifted her state to that more childlike state that complements her mother’s next few words of caring, nurturing concern.
“The phrase ‘How’s my girl?’ is spoken in full nurturing mode rather than pitched to sound like a shared joke or a rhetorical question. Doria elongates the word ‘girl’ as she asks, signalling concern and a desire to offer love and comfort.
“It sounds like the tone a mother uses when she really does want to offer time to listen to her daughter share any problems, worries or troubles as well as any good news.
“This very brief communication hints that Doria is there to support Meghan and offer a listening and probably approving ear whenever needed.”
Just recently Doria posed for a photograph with Meghan and her grandson, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor. Judi commented on Doria’s body language in the pose.
She suggested: “This rather natural-looking glimpse into the three-generation relationship seems to illustrate a fact that is true in any family: that a mother is always a mother to her child even when that child is an adult with children of her own.
“The way that Doria leans over Meghan, mirroring her facial expression, suggests she is still a protective presence in her daughter’s life.
“Meghan, meanwhile, leans towards her son Archie, who stares at the screen while his mother appears to be explaining things and egging him on as well as being the same protective-looking presence as her mother.”
Doria has sometimes been compared to Carole Middleton, the mother of Kate Middleton, as another mother-in-law in the Royal Family. Judi compared Doria’s body language with that of Carole’s.
She claimed: “Carole Middleton, like her daughter, and like most people living in the UK, has been immersed in royal culture for a lifetime and that tends to reflect in her body language since she has become the mother of a future Queen.
READ MORE: Doria Ragland brands Meghan Markle and Prince Harry romance a novelty
“Like Kate she uses subtly deferential lowering signals when she’s in royal company, adopting her daughter’s signature pose of the hands held clasped in front of the lower torso (holding a clutch bag) and standing slightly back to subtly lower her own status signals when she was around the late Queen.
“Even walking with her husband, Carole appears to adopt a similar look of shyness with the hands held in a barrier ritual despite the more carefree-looking smile.
“Doria Ragland’s body language in the UK was much calmer and more confident, albeit quietly confident. Doria seems to have a natural charisma. Her hand clasp is higher, held slightly above waist height, and combining it with the pashmina worn round her shoulders gives a look of elegance with no signals of status-lowering or self-diminishing traits.
“Doria looks like a proud mother might at any wedding as she stands holding Charles’ arm and smiling happily. When the baby was being introduced to the late Queen, Doria leaned in naturally too, to see little Archie.
“There is no sense of her being over-awed by royal protocol and presence, just a happy confidence to be there with her daughter. With Carole, however, there seems to be a slightly cautious and at times wary or aware ingratiation process when she’s with the royals as well as signals of enjoyment of her royal association status at other times.”
Parenting expert Angela Karanja, who founded Raising Remarkable Teenagers, spoke to Express.co.uk about Doria’s grandparenting skills with both Archie and Lilibet.
She said: “Grandmother Doria has been known to be actively involved in helping the family and caring for the children. In that way helping both Harry and Meghan have those restful moments and breaks that every parent needs.
“Doria lives close by and I believe she gets the first refusal considering the close relationship Meghan has with her mother. Meghan and Harry do reach out for help and support whenever that is required which is a positive thing for parents to do. Plus Doria does help as an adoring mother and grandmother.”
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