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The Social Origins of Language

By Daniel Dor

Presents a new theoretical framework for the origins of human language and sets key issues in language evolution in their wider context within biological and cultural evolution


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Preposition Placement in English: A Usage-Based Approach

By Thomas Hoffmann

This is the first study that empirically investigates preposition placement across all clause types. The study compares first-language (British English) and second-language (Kenyan English) data and will therefore appeal to readers interested in world Englishes. Over 100 authentic corpus examples are discussed in the text, which will appeal to those who want to see 'real data'


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Free Access 4 You

Free access to several Brill linguistics journals, such as Journal of Jewish Languages, Language Dynamics and Change, and Brill’s Annual of Afroasiatic Languages and Linguistics.


Academic Paper


Title: Point to a referent, and say, “what is this?” Gesture as a potential cue to identify referents in a discourse
Author: Wing Chee So
Institution: National University of Singapore
Author: Jia Yi Lim
Institution: National University of Singapore
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition; Pragmatics
Subject Language: Chinese, Mandarin
English
Abstract: This study explored whether caregivers' gestures followed the discourse-pragmatic principle of information status of referents (given vs. new) and how their children responded to those gestures when identifying referents. Ten Chinese-speaking and eight English-speaking caregivers were videotaped while interacting spontaneously with their children. Their speech and gestures were coded for referential expressions. Our findings showed that the Chinese-speaking caregivers gestured more often than the English-speaking caregivers but both of the groups gestured more often when asking their children to identify the new referents than the given referents (e.g., pointed to a puzzle while asking “What is this”?). The children were also sensitive to the information status of referents and they relied on the gestures to identify the new referents (but not the given referents). Overall, gesture serves as a potential cue for referential identification in both the caregivers and their children.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Applied Psycholinguistics Vol. 33, Issue 2, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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