Jul 30, 2007

Fictive Motion

(quote below from Cognitive semantics project)

"An impression of Talmy's original cast of mind and method is available from even a brief glance at his account of "fictive motion," that is, of "the extensive representation of nonveridical phenomena - especially forms of motion - both as they are expressed linguistically and as they are perceived visually." Talmy seeks to account for expressions that depict motion when there is no physical occurrence of motion: This fence goes from the plateau to the valley; The cliff wall faces toward/away from the island; I looked out past the steeple; The vacuum cleaner is down around behind the clothes-hamper; The scenery rushed past us as we drove along. In such cases, one conceptual input to the cognitive representation has no motion but the other has motion. These inputs are integrated into a scene of "fictive motion."