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The hand (and its parts) as a source (and target) in figurative thought and language

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  1. The hand (and its parts) as a source (and target) in figurative thought and language Ad Foolen, Radboud University Nijmegen

  2. Why hand? • Embodiment  enactiveembodiment  hand plays a centralrole in enaction • cf. John Stewart et al. (2010) Enaction. Toward a newparadigmforcognitivescience.

  3. Linguistic studies • KingaErzse (2006) German and Rumanian • SonilaSadikaj (2006) German and Albanian • Ahn & Kwon (2007) English • MárquezLinares & MorenoOrtiz (2009) Spanish • Vainik (2009) Estonian • Staffeldt (2011) German • AnastasiosVogiatzis (2012) Greek and English

  4. Studies in otherfields • Charles Bell (1833) The hand. • Frank Hamilton Cushing (1892) Manualconcepts (Fieldwork ZuniIndians) • GézaRévész (1958 [1942]) The human hand: a psychologicalstudy. • Frank Wilson (1998) The hand. Howitsuseshapes the brain, language, and human culture. • Zdravko Radman (ed.) (2013) The hand, anorgan of the mind.

  5. Chirognomy

  6. Evolution of hominids • Bipedalism • Oppositethumb fine grip • Brainevolved as hand-monitor, cf. Gallagher (2013: 220): “the brain – itdoesn’tworkbyitself, but in a larger system thatincludes the hands. Thismakesrationality in somerespectsenactiveoraction-oriented.”

  7. Corticalhumunculus

  8. Ago ergo sum

  9. Outline • 2: Hand (and itsparts) as target domain • 3: Hand and fingers as source domain • 4: A specific target domain: numerals • 5: Handedness as part of laterality • 6: The gesturalorigin of language • 7: Conclusion

  10. 2. Hand and fingers as target • Hand itself: ‘the grasper’ • Hand and χέρι • Enfield et al. (2006) Cross-linguistic categorization of the body • Albanian: Plant  Hand (dry, not working) • Paws, claws  hand • Andaman: thumb ön-o-bo-tabe‘head of the hand’

  11. Target continued • Japanese: family  fingers. oyaubi = older finger, ko-ubi= child finger. Other fingers: uncle, brother, sister. • Dutch muis (cf. muscle) • Hand Palm  tree (leave) • Finger nail  metal nail

  12. 3. Hand as source domain • Compounds and derivations: • Verbs: Dutch handelen ‘to act, to do business’, behandelen ‘treat’, afhandelen ‘finish business’, onderhandelen ‘to negotiate’. • Adjectives: handig ‘handy’, onhandelbaar ‘hard to handle’ • Nouns: washandje ‘wash-cloth’, Englishhandyman, handkerchief

  13. Phraseologisms in Duden 11: Form • Hand – Hände – Händchen • Hijheeftereenhandje van om X tedoen ‘He has a little hand to do X’, i.e. he tends to do X in a quick and secret way. • German Händchenhalten ‘to hold little hands’

  14. Duden 11: Formcontinued • Quantification: keine, zwei, beide, viele, alle • Mit beiden Händenzugreifen, • Dutch: twee handen op één buik ‘two hands ononebelly’ • Adjectives: voll, leer, sauber, schmutzig, gut, sicher, erste, letzte, frei, lose, fest, locker, offen, hohl, helfend, schützend, klebrig, hart, sanft, linke rechte, grün, treu, gut, sicher.

  15. Formcontinued • Verbs: kriegen, geben, übergehen, greifen; sein, liegen, haben; fallen • Syntactic function of hand: • - Not often as subject. Eine Hand wäscht die andere ‚manusmanumlavat (Seneca, Petronius) • - More often as object: Die Hände in den Schoßlegen ‚to lay the hands in the lap’, doing nothing • - Most often as prepositional object: Das liegt auf der Hand ‘that is obvious’.

  16. Formcontinued • Prepositions (hand as PP): in, an, aus, zudurch, bei, auf, unter, von • Other body parts: Haar, Auge, Mund, Herz, Bauch, Knie, Fuß • Sichvor Lachen auf die Knie schlagen ‚to slap onyourkneesbecause of laughing’. Dutch: Je op je knieën slaan van het lachen. • Von der Hand in den Mundleben: to be poor, easily spend money. Dutch: Van de hand in de tand leven.

  17. Semantics of idioms • Goossens (1990), Geeraerts (2002), Barnden (2010), Radden, Panther, Barcelona, Brdar, etc. • Dutch: Hij kreeg de handen er niet voor op elkaar ‘He didn’tget the hands oneachtotherforit [the proposal]’

  18. Vogiatzis (2012): 9 target domains • 1. help/affection • 2. control/lack of control/freedom • 3. skill/action/lack of ability • 4. money • 5. proximity • 6. assault • 7. responsibility / lack of responsibility • 8. success / failure • 9. certainty

  19. Poster of right wing party VVD

  20. Hand in Greekcertainty • Βάζω το χέρι μου στη φωτιά [put my hand in fire]: Be sure for what someone says • Κόβω/δίνω το δεξί μου χέρι [cut/give my right hand]: Be sure for what someone says • Ψηφίσω κάποιον και με τα δυο χέρια [Vote for sb with both hands] : Vote for sbwithout any doubt • Πηγαίνω με το σταυρό στο χέρι [move/go with the cross in hand] : In an honest way, believing that all others follow the rules as well • Βάζω το χέρι μου στο ευαγγέλιο [put my hand on the Gospel] : Be sure for what sb says • Να μου κοπεί το χέρι αν [my hand to be cut if]: Used to show that sb tells the truth

  21. Otherlanguages • Dutch certainty: • De hand vooriemand in het vuurdurvensteken, ‘to put the hand in the fire for someone’ • M’n hand eraf ‘my hand off’ • GermanAuserster hand, Rumanian: din prima surša(Erzse) • Albanian: protection not as target domain (Sadikaj)

  22. Target Domain 6: Assault(and othernegativedomains) • - Assault, aggression, fighting: handgemeen, op de vuistgaan, lossehandenhebben, • - If someone is handtastelijk, ‘touching by hand’, he easily touches other people, in particular from the other sex. • - suicide is called de hand aanzichzelfslaan‘to put the hand on yourself’. • - stealing: In Sesoeto you can say o letsoho ‘he is a hand’, meaning ‘he is a thief’ • - Trade and agreements: handjeklap with the diminutive from ‘hand’, combined with the stem of the verb klappen, to ‘clap’. This means that people make a deal to their advantage, secretly, excluding others.

  23. Other target domains? • Time, seeFrenchmaintenant‘now’, lit. ‘hand holding’, seefor different explanations Van Ginneken (1939) and etymologicaldictionaries • Charactertraits and feelings: • Zwaar op de hand zijn ‘to be heavy on the hand’, i.e. not easy-going • Met de handen in het haarzitten ‘to sit with the hands in the hair’, i.e. to be desperate

  24. 4. Numerals • Heine (1997: 21): “The human hand provides the most important model forstructuring the numeral system.” • 5 or 10 as base

  25. Numeralscontinued • StanislausDehaene (1997) The numbersense: ‘Subitizing’ • Dan Everett (2012) aboutPirahã • 1: finger • 2: finger, finger • 3: middle • 4: small hand • 5: Austronesianlima • 6: jump • 7: hand and two • 8: two peaks • 9: two hands minus one • 10: decem ‘two hands’ • 20: one man

  26. Depictingnumerals • Cushing (1892: 297): “It seems more than probable that the figures and letters in this system [Roman numerals], representing all numbers up to ten, at least, were selected or devised by their earliest inventors, in either deliberate or spontaneous imitation of the fingers, of, first, the left hand, then of the right, as used and seen in counting.” • I, II, III, IV, V, VI, VII, VIII, IX, X • 1, 2, 3

  27. Numerals and writing • Röhr (1994): 82): “the ability to account for the storage of numericalinformation has alwaysplayedanintegral part in the evolution of different systems of writing.”

  28. 5. Handedness • Handedness and laterality: general questions (cf. McManus 2002) • Asymmetry, Corballis (1991) The lopsided ape • Typically human? (Answer: probably yes) • Holistic (hand – foot – brain)? (Answer: probably no) • Cause of right handedness in humans • Cushing: heart  protecting & fighting; • Wilson: holding child left  right hand is free for action) (Evaluation: unproven stories)

  29. 5. Laterality • ‘Neutral’ hand expressions: • On one hand … on the other hand • Dutch Aan de enekant … aan de anderekant • Germaneinerseits … andererseits • Casasanto: individual level, handedness and subjectivepreferences go together • Cultural level: right side is the preferredone, see: • Latin: Ad dexteramPatris; sinister • To be someone’s right hand, He has two left hands. • German: Das macheichdochmit links! • German Ehezurlinken Hand, ‘marriage with the left hand’. • But Spanish: positive connotation of manoizquierda ‘left hand’, meaning ‘gentle hand’

  30. Lateralitycontinued: different namesforleft and right hand • - In Anglosaxon, the right hand is called swidra, which means the strong one. • - Bakongo: • right hand is kookokwalubakala= the hand of men • left hand is kookokwalukento= the hand of women • - Basoeto: • right hand is letsoho la hoja = the hand for eating • left hand is letsoho la botsoara-thebe = the hand for taking the shield

  31. ParaskeviArgyriou & Sotaro Kita (2013) • Left-hand gesture has a stimulating effect on metaphor processing (strengthened awareness of relation between source and target) • Explaining metaphors to L2 learners, for example: To spill the beans • Group 1: no gestures • Group 2: right hand gestures • Group 3: left hand gestures (more explanations involving the source domain)

  32. 6. Gesturalorigin of language • Van Ginneken (1939), Corballis(1991, 2002), Armstronget al. (1995) • Gesturesstillplayan important role in communication • Somefigurativeexpressionsrelate to (emblematic) gestures, likehigh-five, fingerscrossed, thumps up. • More studies on the relationbetweenfigurativelanguage and gesture are necessary.

  33. 7. Conclusion - Hand is a productivesource (and target) domain forfigurativeexpressions. • This fits the view thatenactiveembodiment is the basis forcognition and language. • Furthercross-linguistic research is needed to understand the balancebetweenuniversals and culturalvariation in the role of the hand in conceptualization.

  34. References • Ahn, Hyun Jung & Yeon Jin Kwon. 2007. A study on metaphor and metonymy of Hand. Journal of Language Sciences 14:2, 195-215. • Argyriou, Paraskevi & Sotaro Kita (2013) The effect of left-hand gesture on metaphor explanation. https://www.academia.edu/5975031/The_Effect_of_Left-Hand_Gestures_on_Metaphor_Explanation • Armstrong, David F., William C. Stokoe Sherman E. Wilcox. 1995. Gesture and the nature of language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. • Barnden, John A. 2010. Metaphor and metonymy: Making their connections more slippery. Cognitive Linguistics 21(1), 1-34. • Bell, Charles. 1933. The hand: Its mechanisms and vital endowments as evincing design. London: William Pickering. • Casasanto, Daniel and Evangelia G. Chrysikou. 2011. When Left Is “Right”: Motor Fluency Shapes Abstract Concepts. Psychological Science 22(4), 419 –422. • Corballis, Michael. 1991. The lopsided ape. Evolution of the generative mind. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press. • Corballis, Michael. 2002. From hand to mouth. The origins of language. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press. • Crow, Tim. 2004. Directionality is the key to the origin of modern Homo sapiens (the Broca-Annett axiom): A reply to Rogers’ view of The speciation of modern homo sapiens. Laterality: Asymmetries of body, brain and cognition 9(2), 233-242. • Cushing, Frank Hamilton. 1892. Manual concepts: A study of the influence of hand-usage on culture-growth. American Anthropologist 5:4, 289-318. • Dehaene, Stanislaus. 1997. The number sense: How the mind creates mathematics. New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press. • Enfield, Nick J., AsifaMajid, and Mirjam van Staden. 2006. Cross-linguistic categorization of the body: Introduction. Language Sciences28, 137-147. • Erzse, Kinga. 2006. Hand und Fuß im interkulturellen Vergleich. Eine kontrastive Untersuchung von Redewendungen im Deutschen und Rumänischen. In: Germanistische Beiträge, Nr. 20-21. Sibiu / Hermannstadt: Lucian-Blaga-Universität, 179-254. http://reviste.ulbsibiu.ro/gb/2021/Erzse.pdf • Foolen, Ad. 2008. The heart as a source of semiosis: The case of Dutch. In: F. Sharafian et al. (eds.) Culture, body, and language. Conceptualizations of internal body organs across cultures and languages. Amsterdam: Benjamins, 373-394. • Everett, Daniel L. 2012. Language: The cultural tool. New York: Pantheon. • Geeraerts, Dirk. 2002. The interaction of metaphor and metonymy in composite expressions. In: R. Dirven & R. Pörings (eds.), Metaphor and metonymy in comparison and contrast.Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 435-465.

  35. Referencescontinued • Ginneken, Jacques van. 1939. La reconstructiontypologique des languesarchaïques de l’humanité. Amsterdam: Noord-HollandscheUittevers-Maatschappij. • Goossens, Louis. 1990. Metaphtonymy: The interaction of metaphor and metonymy in expressions for linguistic action. Cognitive Linguistics 1, 417-451. • Gvozdanović, Jadranka. Ed. 1999. Numeral types and changes worldwide. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. • Heine, Bernd. 1997. Cognitive foundations of grammar. New York and Oxford: Oxford University Press. • LujánMartínez, Eugenio Ramón. 1999. The Indo-European system of numerals from ‘1’ to ’10’. In: J. Gvozdanović (ed.), 199-219. • Majewicz, Alfred F. 1984. Le role du doigt et de la main et leurs designations en certaineslanguesdans la formation des systems particuliers de numeration et des noms de nombre. Lingua Posnaniensis 26, 69-84. Also in Fanny de Sievers (ed.) (1981), 193-212. • Marchand, Trevor, H.J. 2012. Knowledge in hand: Explorations of brain, hand and tool. In: Richard Fardon et al. (eds.), The Sage handbook of social anthropology. Vol. 2, 261-270. • Márquez Linares, Carlos, and Antonio Moreno Ortiz. 1999. Fraseologíacomparadamediante el uso de córporatextuales: el caso de mano/hand. In Estudios de lingüísticadescriptiva y comparada. Sevilla: Kronos, 293-304. • McManus, Chris. 2002. Right Hand, Left Hand: the origins of asymmetry in brains, bodies, atoms and cultures. Weidenfeld and Nicolson. • Radman, Zdravko ed. 2013. The hand, an organ of the mind. What the manual tells the mental. • Révész, Géza. 1958. The human hand: a psychological study. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul. • Röhr, Heinz Markus. 1994. Writing. Its evolution and relation to speech. Bochum: Brockmeyer. • Sadikaj, Sonila. 2009. Metaphorische Konzepte in somatischen Phraseologismen des Deutschen und Albanischen. Eine kontrastive Untersuchung anhand von Herz- und Hand-Somatismen. Phd. Würzburg, http://opus.bibliothek.uni-wuerzburg.de/volltexte/2010/5066/pdf/WespA_9.pdf • de Sievers, Fanny. Ed. 1981. La main et les doigtsdansl’expressionlinguistique. Paris:SELAF. • Staffeldt, Sven. 2011. Die phraseologische Konstruktionsfamilie [X Präp Hand Verb]. Zeitschrift für germanistische Linguistik 39, 188-216. • Stewart, John, Olivier Gapenneand Ezequiel A. Di Paolo. Eds. 2010.Enaction. Toward a New Paradigm for Cognitive Science. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press. • Vainik, Ene. 2009. Towards a conceptualized model of bodily communication: A study of hand-expressions in Estonian. In: J. Zlatev, M. Andrén, C. Lundmark, and M. FalckJohnsson (eds.) Studies in Language and Cognition. London: Cambridge Scholars Press, 438-453.

  36. Thankyou!