Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription or Fee Access

Spatial Frames of Reference in aṣ-Ṣāniʕ Arabic: Preliminary Observations of Language-to-Cognition Correlation

Letizia Cerqueglini

Abstract


I compare linguistic and cognitive representations of projective spatial relations in traditional aṣ-Ṣāniˁ Arabic (TAA), i.e., application of spatial frames of reference (FoRs). TAA uses all three FoRs in language, selected according to properties of Ground objects (Gs). Absolute FoR is used with non-prototypical arrays and unknown Gs. It is anchored in cardinal directions or prominent landmarks, according to task. G-based FoR selection is missing from cognition, where only the Absolute FoR is applied. Since Bedouin languages use Absolute FoR, recognizing saliency to astronomical directions, I hypothesize the primacy of the astronomically anchored Absolute FoR, as in TAA cognitive bedrock, with respect to other FoRs later developed by language. Deterministic claims on the innovative position of language with respect to cognition are confirmed, yet TAA language-to-cognition mismatch indicates prevention or delay in achieving mutual isomorphism.


Keywords


Frames of Reference, Language-to-Cognition Correlation, aṣ-Ṣāniʕ Arabic

Full Text:

PDF

References


BOHNEMEYER, J. (2011), Spatial FoRs in Yucatec: Referential Promiscuity and Task specificity, in O'MEARA, C. and PÉREZ BÁEZ, G. (2011, eds.), FoRs in Mesoamerican Languages. Language Science, Vol. 33 (6), pp. 892-914.

BORODITSKY, L. (2001), Does Language Shape Thought? Mandarin and English Speakers’ Conception of Time, in «Cognitive Psychology», 43, 1, pp. 1-22.

BORODITSKY, L. (2006), Linguistic Relativity. Encyclopedia of Cognitive Science.

BROWN, P. and LEVINSON, S.C. (1993), Linguistic and non-linguistic coding of spatial arrays: Explorations in Mayan cognition, in Working Paper No. 24 of the Cognitive Anthropology Research Group, Nijmegen, MPI.

CARLSON-RADVANSKY, L.A. and LOGAN, G.D. (1997), The influence of reference frame selection on spatial template construction, in «Journal of Memory and Language», 37, 3, pp. 411-437.

DANZIGER, E. (2010), Deixis, gesture, and cognition in spatial Frame of Reference typology, in «Studies in Language», 34, 1, pp. 167-185.

HAVILAND, J.B. (1998), Guugu Yimithirr cardinal directions, in «Ethos», 26, 1, pp. 7–24.

HAYWARD, W.G. and TARR, M.J. (1995), Spatial language and Spatial Representation, in «Cognition», 55, pp. 39-84.

LANDAU, B. (2010), Paths in language and cognition: Universal asymmetries and their cause, in MAROTTA, G., LENCI, A., MEINI, L. and ROVAI, F. (2010, eds.), Space in language. Proceedings of the International Conference, October 8-10 2009, Pisa, ETS, 73, pp. 73-94.

LEVINSON, S.C. (2003), Space in Language and Cognition. Explorations in Cognitive Diversity. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

LI, P. and GLEITMAN, L. (2002), Turning the tables: Language and spatial reasoning, in Cognition, Vol. 83(3), 265-294.

MAROTTA, G., LENCI, A., MEINI, L. and ROVAI, F. (2010), Space in Language. Pisa, ETS.

MAROTTA, G., MEINI, L. and DONATI, M. (2013), Parlare senza Vedere, Pisa, ETS.

MARR, D. (1982), Vision, New York, Freeman.

MISHRA, R.C., DASEN, P.R. and NIRAULA, S. (2003), Ecology, language, and performance on spatial cognitive tasks, in «International Journal of Psychology», 38, pp. 366-383.

MUNNICH, E., LANDAU, B. and DOSHER, B.A. (2001), Spatial language and spatial representation: A cross-linguistic comparison, in «Cognition», 81, 3, pp. 171–207.

TALMY, L. (1983), How language structures space, in PICK, H. and ACREDOLO, L. (1983, eds.), Spatial orientation: Theory, research and application, New York, Plenum Press, pp.225-282.

TVERSKY, B. (1996), Language and spatial cognition, in «International Journal of Psychology», 31, 3-4, pp. 3010.


Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.
eISSN 2281-9142 - ISSN 0085-6827 - Webmaster - Publisher