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Gestural representation of event structure in dyadic interaction

Christensen, Peer LU and Tylén, Kristian (2013) Tilburg Gesture Research Meeting (TiGeR) 2013
Abstract
What are the underlying motivations for the conceptualization of events? Recent studies show that when people are asked to use nonverbal gestures to describe transitive events they prefer the semantic order Agent-Patient-Act, analogous to SOV in grammatical terms. The original explanation has been that this pattern reflects a cognitively “natural order” for the conceptualization of events. However, other types of transitive events have not been investigated in earlier studies. We report experimental findings from a referential game in which pairs of participants used gestures to match shared sets of stimuli depicting two types of transitive events: (i) object manipulation events and (ii) construction events. We argue that these event types... (More)
What are the underlying motivations for the conceptualization of events? Recent studies show that when people are asked to use nonverbal gestures to describe transitive events they prefer the semantic order Agent-Patient-Act, analogous to SOV in grammatical terms. The original explanation has been that this pattern reflects a cognitively “natural order” for the conceptualization of events. However, other types of transitive events have not been investigated in earlier studies. We report experimental findings from a referential game in which pairs of participants used gestures to match shared sets of stimuli depicting two types of transitive events: (i) object manipulation events and (ii) construction events. We argue that these event types have inherently different logical and sequential structure and, accordingly, will yield different gesture orders. Our findings confirm such predictions: manipulation events predominantly elicited gesture strings with SOV order, while construction events elicited SVO order. The results indicate that participants were highly sensitive to differences in event structure. Even with increased communicative pressure, pairs did not settle on a single order for the two types of events. We conclude that gesture order seems to be motivated by extralinguistic event structure rather than a cognitively “natural order”. (Less)
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Tilburg Gesture Research Meeting (TiGeR) 2013
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English
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b0bc3907-233a-4592-89a1-6fe26560963d
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2016-09-27 08:16:21
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@misc{b0bc3907-233a-4592-89a1-6fe26560963d,
  abstract     = {What are the underlying motivations for the conceptualization of events? Recent studies show that when people are asked to use nonverbal gestures to describe transitive events they prefer the semantic order Agent-Patient-Act, analogous to SOV in grammatical terms. The original explanation has been that this pattern reflects a cognitively “natural order” for the conceptualization of events. However, other types of transitive events have not been investigated in earlier studies. We report experimental findings from a referential game in which pairs of participants used gestures to match shared sets of stimuli depicting two types of transitive events: (i) object manipulation events and (ii) construction events. We argue that these event types have inherently different logical and sequential structure and, accordingly, will yield different gesture orders. Our findings confirm such predictions: manipulation events predominantly elicited gesture strings with SOV order, while construction events elicited SVO order. The results indicate that participants were highly sensitive to differences in event structure. Even with increased communicative pressure, pairs did not settle on a single order for the two types of events. We conclude that gesture order seems to be motivated by extralinguistic event structure rather than a cognitively “natural order”.},
  author       = {Christensen, Peer and Tylén, Kristian},
  language     = {eng},
  title        = {Gestural representation of event structure in dyadic interaction},
  year         = {2013},
}