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Fictive motion categories in modern Persian: A cognitive semantic approach

Journal: Russian Journal of Linguistics (Vol.28, No. 2)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ; ;

Page : 294-320

Keywords : fictive motion; fictive motion categories; Persian language; present tense;

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Motion is the cornerstone of cognitive structures which can be signified factively and fictively. Fictive motion events in English are classified into six categories (Talmy 2000a). While Iranian linguists have worked on verbs and typology of fictive motion, they almost failed to discover these categories. This study made an attempt to examine these categories by addressing the questions: What are fictive motion categories in Persian? To what extent is the speakers’ cognition influenced by the structure of the language they speak? What are Persian speakers’ preferable tenses? With this aim, using convenience sampling and qualitative research design, sixteen sentences extracted from Talmy’s model plus nine fillers were rendered into Persian. To avoid ordering effect, sixty participants were organized in a counterbalanced technique and accomplished completion and picture description tasks so that one half of the participants filled the completion task first and dealt with the picture description task later, while others acted in the reverse order. In completion task the participants performed accurately except the pattern paths category. However, they did not produce fictive motion sentences for the prospect, pattern, and advent paths, frame relative with factively stationary observer and site manifestation in the picture description task. They tended to adopt present tense in producing fictive motion sentences for the depicted categories. More importantly, the paper analyses the participants’ performance in completing the tasks related to the sixteen fictive motion categories and shows that cognition is influenced by the linguistic structure of the speakers. It is hoped that this study can be a contribution to the field of cognitive and semantic linguistics and also advance fictive motion studies in different languages.

Last modified: 2024-06-11 18:09:32