Frames of spatial reference in Dhivehi language and cognition

2018-02-28T00:51:36Z (GMT) by JONATHON THOMAS STEPHEN LUM
This thesis investigates spatial language and cognition in Dhivehi, the language of the Maldives. It finds that different speakers of the same language conceptualise and talk about spatial relationships in very different ways (e.g., by using cardinal directions, by using egocentric terms like 'left' and 'right', and even by using stars in the night sky). This variation is explained partly in terms of different environments (e.g., urban vs. rural communities), but also in terms of how speakers habitually interact with their environment. The findings suggest that environmental interaction mediates the complex relationship between language, culture, and spatial cognition.