Sounding out ideas on language, vivid sensory words, and iconicity

Tag: Sound symbolism

  • What sound symbolism can and cannot do: new paper in Language

    We have a new paper out in Language: Dingemanse, Mark, Will Schuerman, Eva Reinisch, Sylvia Tufvesson, and Holger Mitterer. 2016. “What Sound Symbolism Can and Cannot Do: Testing the Iconicity of Ideophones from Five Languages.” Language 92 (2): e117–33. doi:10.1353/lan.2016.0034 The basic finding is this: people are sensitive to the meaning of ideophones they’ve never heard, […]

  • Early sources on African ideophones, part I: Schlegel on Ewe, 1857

    This is the first post in a series. Featured philologist of today is Joh. Bernhard Schlegel, for providing us with precious data on ideophones (expressives) in nineteenth-century Ewe, a Kwa language of southeastern Ghana. But since this is the first post on ideophones here, let’s first try to answer the obvious question: what are ideophones, […]