Workshop “Linguistic investigations beyond language: gestures, body movement and primate linguistics”

Cornelia Ebert (ZAS, PSIMS), Uli Sauerland (ZAS, LISI), Jeremy Kuhn (Institut Jean Nicod, CNRS)

Time and venue:
March 11-12, 2019 at ZAS Berlin, “Trajekte”-Room, 3rd floor, (→Map)
How to get to ZAS!

Preliminary Program

Monday, 11.03.2019

Time Event
09.15-10.00 Welcome
Cornelia Ebert*, Jeremy Kuhn**, Uli Sauerland* (*Leibniz-Zentrum Allgemeine Sprachwissenschaft, Berlin; **CNRS, EHESS, ENS, Paris)
Animal Communication
10.00-11.00 “Gestural Origins: Linguistic Features of Great Ape Gestural Communication” (Abstract)
Cat Hobaiter (University of St. Andrews)
11.00-11.30 Coffee
11.30-12.15 “How to do things with nonwords: communication, expression, and meaning”
Dorit Bar-On (University of Connecticut, Philosophy) & Kate Arnold (University of St. Andrews, School of Psychology and Neuroscience)
12.15-13.00 “Titi monkey semantics: progresses and perspectives”
Mélissa Berthet (Institut Jean Nicod, Département d’études cognitives, ENS, EHESS, CNRS, Paris)
13.00-14.15 Lunch break
Music & Dance
14.15-15.00 “Gesture, music, and categories: the abstraction ofmath meets the variety of expression”
Maria Mannone
15.00-15.45 “Musical gestures in the typology of linguistic inferences”
Janek Guerrini & Léo Migotti (Institut Jean Nicod, CNRS, Paris)
15.45-16.45 Talk by Pritty Patel-Grosz (University of Oslo), tba
16.45-17.00 Coffee
17.00-18.00 Discussion What can Super Linguistics do?

Tuesday, 12.03.2019

Time Event
09.00-10.00 “Relating Gesture to Speech” (Abstract)
Julie Hunter (University Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona)
10.00-10.45 “Asymmetries in spatial communication: evidence from sources and goals”
Natasha Abner*, Laura Lakusta**, Yasmin Hussein, Rebecca Lotwich**, Emily Miller*, & Anah Salgat* (*University of Michigan, Ann Arbor; **Montclair State University)
10.45-11.15 Coffee
11.15-12.00 “Linguistic inferences without words: from gestures to visual animations”
Lyn Tieu (Western Sydney University), Philippe Schlenker (Institut Jean-Nicod, CNRS, Paris, NYU), & Emmanuel Chemla (LSCP, DEC, ENS, Paris)
12.00-12.45 “Co-nominal pointing”
Amir Anvari (Institut Jean-Nicod, ENS, Paris)
12.45-14.00 Lunch break
14.00-14.45 “Iconic modulation in spoken language: iconicity, intensification, or both?”
Janek Guerrini (Institut Jean Nicod, CNRS, Paris)
14.45-15.30 “Composition determines projection across modalities”
Masha Esipova (NYU)
15.30-16.00 Coffee
16.00-16.45 tba
16.45-17.30 “Extending the Typology of Iconic Presuppositions”
Philippe Schlenker (Institut Jean-Nicod, CNRS, Paris, NYU)

In recent years, formal linguistic methodology and methodology inspired by formal linguistics have been systematically applied to non-standard objects of study. Three core areas that have been explored encompass the syntax/semantics of gestures (Lascarides & Stone 2009, Giorgolo 2010, Ebert and Ebert 2014, Tieu et al. 2017, Schlenker 2018), the syntax/semantics of body movement beyond gestures, such as dance (Napoli & Kraus 2015, Charnavel 2016, Patel-Grosz et al. 2018), and the calls and gestures of non-human animals, in particular primates (Fitch and Hauser 2004, Yip 2006, Berwick et al. 2011, Schlenker et al. 2016).
All of these domains are structured systems of communication that are ‘outside’ of language, whether that be because they are performed by humans who do not use language for functional or expressive reasons (gesture and dance) or because they are performed by nonhuman primates without the capacity for human language. The workshop’s emphasis on body movements in particular allows a potential bridge between the communicative and narrative actions by humans and their evolutionary antecedents in primate gestures (Kersken et al. 2018).
The aim of this workshop is to bring together researchers applying formal linguistic methodology and methodology inspired by formal linguistics to gesture, body movement and primate linguistics. Topics of interest include (non-exhaustively) the syntax/semantics of:

  • co-speech, pro-speech and post-speech gestures
  • gestures in non-human animals, such as chimpanzees and other great apes
  • vocalizations of non-human primates
  • the interaction between gesture and dance
  • dance movements in both highly conventionalized and non-conventionalized dance forms
  • facial expressions in humans and non-human primates

Invited speakers: Cat Hobaiter (University of St.Andrews), Julie Hunter (University Pompeu Fabra), Pritty Patel-Grosz (University of Oslo)

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