Our focus is on a particular pattern among American English speakers — transversal temporal gestures — in which time is conceptualized as moving from left to right across the body. Based on numerous examples elicited in a controlled observational paradigm, we suggest a classification of American English speakers’ transversal temporal gestures into five types — placing, pointing, duration-marking, bridging, and animating — and provide examples of each type. Discussion focuses on the following three topics: the usefulness of quasi-experimental approaches for the study of gesture; variation in temporal gestures across cultures; and how temporal gestures fit into a broader understanding of metaphorical gestures.
Across time, across the body: Transversal temporal gestures
Author(s): Kensy Cooperrider and Rafael Núñez 2009
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