Kinship gestures – Talk at the University of Sydney, November 4th, 12:00 (local time)

If Marie is your mother, that Tom is your mother’s brother, and that Jay is Tom’s first born son, who is Jay to you? …. your cousin of course! Well actually it depends. But more on that later. You probably did not notice, but when you solved that riddle you employed a number of relatively complex cognitive processes: a combination of perspective-shifting processes (your mother’s -> your mother’s brother’s –> your mother’s brother’s son’s) and relational thinking (if X is Y’s S, and that Y is M’s B, then X = my cousin). Do these complex cognitive mechanisms leave traces in the way we speak, gesture, and draw about family relations? That’s the question I will address tomorrow at the Sydney Centre for Language Research, University of Sydney, with a case study on Paamese kinship systems. I will give this talk in person, but it is also possible to join on zoom. More information here.

Published by

Simon Devylder

Linguistic Anthropologist

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