Edited by David M. Mark, Andrew G. Turk, Niclas Burenhult and David Stea
[Culture and Language Use 4] 2011
► pp. 225–237
Differing conceptualizations of the same landscape
The Athabaskan and Eskimo language boundary in Alaska
This paper further explores the non-universality of landscape terms by focusing on one particular landscape, the Yukon Intermontane Plateau of western Alaska. This region serves as the boundary between two great language families of North America, Athabaskan and Eskimo, and thus offers a unique laboratory in which to examine the extent to which cultural factors in two genetically unrelated languages influence the categorization of a single, fixed landscape. Drawing on published lexical sources, unpublished place name documentation, and first-hand interviews with Native speakers, the results presented here demonstrate that, while Athabaskan and Eskimo speakers may occupy the same landscape, their respective languages conceptualize that landscape in different ways.
Cited by other publications
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