ABSOLUTE FRAMES OF SPATIAL REFERENCE IN AUSTRONESIAN LANGUAGES

Abstract


This paper provides a brief survey on various absolute frames of spatial reference that can be observed in a number of Austronesian languages - with an emphasis on languages of the Oceanic subgroup. It is based on research of conceptions of space and systems of spatial reference that was initiated by the “space project” of the Cognitive Anthropology Research Group (now the Department of Language and Cognition) at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics and by my anthology “Referring to Space” (Senft 1997a; see Keller 2002: 250). The examples illustrating these different absolute frames of spatial refer-ence reveal once more that earlier generalizations within the domain of “SPACE” were strongly biased by research on Indo-European languages; they also reveal how complex some of these absolute frames of spatial reference found in these languages are. The paper ends with a summary of Wegener’s (2002) pre-liminary typology of these absolute frames of spatial reference.

Gunter Senft

Gunter.Senft@mpi.nl
Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics PB 310 NL-6500 AH Nijmegen The Netherlands

Gunter Senft is senior investigator at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen (The Netherlands) and extraordinary professor of general linguistics at the University of Cologne (Germany). He has been studying the language and the culture of the Trobriand Islanders of Papua New Guinea since 1982 and conducted field research on the Trobriand Islands for 45 months during 16 long- and short term field-trips between 1982 and 2012.; Website: http://www.mpi.nl/people/senft-gunter Publications: http://www.mpi.nl/people/senft-gunter/ publications; Вебсайт: http://www.mpi.nl/people/senft-gunter; Публикации: http://www.mpi.nl/people/senft-gunter/publications

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