Deceptive Perception: How Language Shapes our Reality

Prof. dr. Asifa Majid on the way language shapes the way we think.

Organisator Studium Generale

di 25 november 2014 20:00 tot 22:00

Locatie Impulse, gebouwnummer 115
Does time flow in the same way for speakers of different languages? How do people talk and think about sounds that are high and low pitch? Or, more generally: Do people around the world share the same conceptual repertoire, or are our concepts shaped by the language and culture we inhabit?
Cross-linguistic studies reveal spectacular variation in the semantics of everyday concepts, leading researchers to ask whether differences in linguistic encoding entail differences in thinking too. In her talk, Asifa Majid presents evidence for linguistic relativity in the domains of time and sound. Do these studies show convincingly that language plays a causal role in shaping how we think?

Asifa Majid is Professor of Language, Communication and Cultural Cognition at the Center for Language Studies at Radboud University Nijmegen. Her research investigates the nature of categories and concepts in language, in non-linguistic perception and cognition, and the relationship between them. She adopt a large-scale cross-cultural approach in order to establish which aspects of categorisation are fundamentally shared, and which language-specific.