Symposia

Tuesday, June 24th

The conceptualization of emotions. Synchronic and diachronic cultural variation

Convener: Ad Foolen; participants: James Mischler, Ene Vainik, A. Baicchi, Barbara Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk, Ruti Vardi, Angeliki Athanasiadou, Tessa Yuditha, Ad Foolen

Figurative expressions for emotions are typically grounded in image schemas which, in their turn, are grounded in bodily experience. This does not automatically lead to the same conceptualizations in all languages. Cultural models play a role as well. They act as ‘selectors’ from the many figurative possibilities that are provided by image schemas and bodily experience, resulting in variation in the world’s languages.
In the seven contributions to this symposium, new research will be presented in which the role of culture in the conceptualization of emotions is in focus. The data vary on the synchronic and diachronic dimension and are taken from different cultures. An important goal of the symposium will be to explore general constraints on the cultural variation. Can we make predictions regarding the conceptualization of emotions on the basis of characteristics of specific cultures?  more>>

Wednesday, June 25th

Cognitive and Cross-linguistic Aspects of Literature

Convener: Esther Pascual; participants: Esther Pascual, Sergei Sandler, Marla Perkins

The symposium examines the cognition of literature in various languages. Session one focuses on how the cognitive function of attention directs the content of developing oral literatures; Session two focuses on how conversants cognitively manage the different levels of characters’ dialogues; and Session three focuses on issues in translation of indirect speech in literature, suggesting that multiple viewpoints are managed in language-specific ways. more >>

Thursday, June 26th

Abstract hierarchical models in linguistics and their relevance for cognition and behaviour

Convener: Jamie Williams; participants: Noah Russell, Jamie Williams, Derek Irwin

Given the physicalist stance taken by modern day cognitive science, theorizing about the mind must be grounded in our current understanding of physical systems, normally focusing on the brain and nervous systems. Since the advent of modern day cognitive science, much important progress has been made in attempting to locate where certain cognitive processes may take place in the brain. However, although the nature of psychological processes and fine-grained details of neurons as biological entities are well known, discovering how these two aspects of cognitive processes are linked remains an outstanding question.
The Neurophotonics Lab at the University of Nottingham is currently developing the Simple Living Artificial Brain system (SLAB), in order to provide the experimental means to investigate the links between low-level neural activity and cognitive and behavioural processes. The SLAB is simple enough so that accurate physical data can be recorded from the system, while having enough complexity in order that it can produce meaningful examples of behaviour. more>>

Faculty of Philosophy and Sociology