Thursday 30 January – Bettina Gruber

Speaker: Bettina Gruber (Universiteit Utrecht)
Title: The Spatiotemporal Dimensions of Person
Time: 13:15-14:30
Venue: Eyckhof 1/003C

In this talk, I will take a closer look at the deictic and grammatical category person and its associated linguistic expressions: indexical, i.e. first and second person, pronouns. I argue that person is derivative of spatiotemporal information: Firstly, temporal information is argued to restrict the interpretation of indexical pronouns to a contextually relevant temporal stage. Secondly, spatial information contributes the necessary contextual anchoring. In other words, indexical pronouns are defined by the where and when of their referent. Based on data from Dutch, English, German, Italian, Armenian (Indoeuropean), Turkish (Turkic), and Blackfoot (Algonquian), it will be shown that these spatiotemporal components are also encoded morphosyntactically in the internal structure of indexical pronouns.

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