Publication details [#979]

Núñez, Rafael E. and Kensy Cooperrider. 2013. The tangle of space and time in human cognition. Trends in cognitive sciences 17 (5) : 220–229. 10 pp.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language
Place, Publisher
Amsterdam: Elsevier


This review article aims to provide an overarching analysis of the findings to date on the concepts of space and time in human cognition. Research has uncovered universal patterns as well as striking cultural particulars. Humans do not seem to map space and time onto each other in just any way but recruit a limited subset of spatial experiences for construing the full complement of temporal experiences, e.g., the moving ego metaphor and the moving time metaphor. As yet, there is no evidence of any language community or culture lacking spatial construals of time, but the degree to which they are explicit in linguistic expressions and cultural representations vary considerably. The conclusion drawn is that time, as conceptualised by humans, is a mosaic of different patterns that may or may not overlap and draw on concepts of other domains.