The Grammar of Space

| San José State University
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A cross-linguistic study of grammatical morphemes expressing spatial relationships that discusses the relationship between the way human beings experience space and the way it is encoded grammatically in language. The discussion of the similarities and differences among languages in the encoding and expression of spatial relations centers around the emergence and evolution of spatial grams, and the semantic and morphosyntactic characteristics of two types of spatial grams. The author bases her observations on the study of data from 26 genetically unrelated and randomly selected languages. It is shown that languages are similar in the way spatial grams emerge and evolve, and also in the way specific types of spatial grams are used to express not only spatial but also temporal and other non-spatial relations. Motivation for these similarities may lie in the way we, as human beings, experience the world, which is constrained by our physical configuration and neurophysiological apparatus, as well as our individual cultures.
[Typological Studies in Language, 25]  1994.  xiv, 290 pp.
Publishing status: Available
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements
xi
List of Abbreviations
xiii
The conceptual framework
1
General Methodology
41
The Evolution of Spatial Grams
61
The Front-Back Axis
123
Conclusion
203
Notes
213
Appendix A: The SpaceCats sample
223
Appendix B: Coding manual
225
Appendix C: Meaning component working definitions
235
Appendix D: Frequency of meaning components in the data base
245
Appendix E: Nominal sources of spatial grams
249
Bibliography
263
Language Index
279
Name Index
283
Subject Index
287
Subjects
BIC Subject: CF – Linguistics
BISAC Subject: LAN009000 – LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General
U.S. Library of Congress Control Number:  93034836
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