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The Impulse to Gesture
Where Language, Minds, and Bodies Intersect

$116.00 (C)

  • Date Published: October 2018
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108417204

$ 116.00 (C)

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About the Authors
  • Gestures are central to the way people use language when they interact. This book places our impulse to gesture at the very heart of linguistic structure: grammar. Based on the phenomenon of negation - a linguistic universal with clear grammatical and gestural manifestations - Simon Harrison argues that linguistic concepts are fundamentally multi modal and shows how they lead to recurrent bindings between grammar and gesture when people speak. Studying how speakers express negation multi modally in a range of social and professional contexts, Harrison explores how and when people gesture, what people achieve linguistically and discursively with their gestures, and why we find similar uses of gesture in different languages (including spoken and signed language). Establishing the inseparability of grammar and gesture, this book is an important reference for any researcher interested in the relation between language, gesture, and cognition.

    • Bridges the theoretical and empirical gap between gesture research and grammatical analysis
    • Offers a model to account for gestures cross-linguistically including English, French and Chinese as well as gesture in signed language linguistics
    • Illustrated examples of gestures are provided to help readers follow the argument and analysis
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Harrison’s book offers an excellent example for how multimodal language use can be approached with a focus on grammatical phenomena. Numerous nicely discussed examples and a well-grounded discussion of theoretical and methodological aspects for such an endeavor make the book attractive to students as well as advanced scholars interested in a usage-based perspective on multimodal language use.' Jana Bressem, Journal of Pragmatics

    '… this book can be appreciated by anyone interested in any form linguistics and communication. The author does an incredible job to thoroughly make his case, addressing all the key constructs of cospeech gesticulation chapter by chapter, and in a way that is accessible to novices, and informative to scientists and linguistics alike.' J. Raouf Belkhir and Eduardo Navarrete, Perception

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2018
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108417204
    • length: 248 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 156 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.52kg
    • contains: 111 b/w illus. 5 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. The impulse to gesture: spontaneous but constrained
    2. The grammar-gesture nexus: a mechanism for regularity in gesture
    3. Sync points in speech: evidence of grammatical affiliation for gesture
    4. Gesture as construal: blockage, force, and distance in space and mind
    5. Gesture sequences: wrist as hinge for shifts in discourse
    6. Patterns of gesturing: the business of 'horizontal palming'
    7. Wiping away: embodied interaction in speech and sign
    8. Impulse theory: how, when, and why we gesture.

  • Author

    Simon Harrison, City University of Hong Kong
    Simon Harrison is Assistant Professor of Applied Linguistics in the School of English at the University of Nottingham Ningbo China. His research has played a central role in bridging the divide between grammar and gesture.

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