LINGUIST List 27.2338

Tue May 24 2016

Calls: Cog Sci, Gen Ling, Psycholing, Semantics, Text/Corpus Ling, Typology/Netherlands

Editor for this issue: Anna White <>

Date: 24-May-2016
From: Laura Speed <>
Subject: Perception Metaphor Workshop
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Full Title: Perception Metaphor Workshop

Date: 12-Oct-2016 - 13-Oct-2016
Location: Nijmegen, Netherlands
Contact Person: Laura Speed
Meeting Email: < click here to access email >
Web Site:

Linguistic Field(s): Cognitive Science; General Linguistics; Psycholinguistics; Semantics; Text/Corpus Linguistics; Typology

Call Deadline: 19-Jun-2016

Meeting Description:

The humanities and social sciences are in the throes of “embodiment” and this has put perception to the forefront of inquiry. In this workshop we explore the myriad ways perceptual language serves as the basis of, or target for, metaphorical extension. We bring together scholars from linguistics, anthropology, and psychology to tackle perception and metaphor from historical, typological, corpus, experimental, and developmental perspectives. In doing so, we hope to stimulate debate and exchange on a number of key issues.

In particular, we seek to address fundamental questions such as how does metaphor and metonymy work in perceptual domains. Sensory domains have been characterized as physical and relatively concrete, making for potential source domains in metaphorical mapping. Vision is often singled out amongst perceptual categories as the source of metaphorical mappings (e.g., Sweetser 1990), and a recent cross-linguistic study (San Roque et al. 2015) showed that in everyday conversation reference to vision outnumbers reference to other sensory modalities. But what happens in the perceptual domains beyond vision? A short foray to audition shows rather than sound being the source of metaphors, it is often the target (e.g., space → pitch: high note, low note; touch → loudness: soft sigh). So, what types of metaphor and metonymy are there into and out of perceptual domains? And how do the lesser-considered senses of smell and taste behave?

Are there really “universal” perceptual metaphors? Do perception verbs behave in similar ways cross-linguistically? What about adjectives or nouns? Patterns of polysemy suggest different trajectories for different word classes, with verbs moving from higher to lower senses, but adjectives perhaps doing the opposite. What can data from understudied languages tell us about these tendencies?

There are many examples cross-linguistically of perceptual terms having multiple meanings (e.g., ‘I see the dog’ vs. ‘I see what you mean’, or ‘I smell the smoke’ vs. ‘I smell a rat’), especially where the extended senses apply to concepts outside of the perceptual domain. In these cases, how do we establish which meaning is primary? To what extent can we use historical linguistics to understand semantic change within lexicon from the perceptual domain?

Confirmed Speakers:

- Wendy Anderson (University of Glasgow)
- Rosario Caballero (University of Castilla-La Mancha)
- Iraide Ibarretxe-Antuñano (Universidad de Zaragoza)
- Zoltán Kövecses (Eötvös Loránd University)
- Bambi B. Schieffelin (New York University)
- Martine Vanhove (Langage, Langues et Cultures d’Afrique Noire)
- Bodo Winter (University of Birmingham)
- Ulrike Zeshan (University of Central Lancashire)


Asifa Majid, Carolyn O’Meara, Lila San Roque, Laura Speed

Call for Papers:

Abstract Submission:

We invite submission of abstracts for this workshop for short talks and posters. Abstracts may not exceed 500 words. Please send abstracts to the following email address ( with the title “Perception Metaphor Workshop”. In the body of the email, please include the following: the title of the talk, author’s name(s), author’s affiliation(s), email address where you wish to be contacted, whether you prefer a talk or a poster, and attach the abstract as a pdf file. The deadline for submitting abstracts is 19 June 2016. Notice of acceptance will be made by 29 July 2016.

Page Updated: 24-May-2016