Space in Language and Cognition Stephen C. Questions Jan P. The Anatomy of Meaning N. Systems of Nominal Classification Gunter Senft. Person Reference in Interaction N. Person Reference in Interaction Steven Levinson. Table of contents 1. On representing events Eric Pederson and Jurgen Bohnemeyer; 2. Event representation in serial verb constructions Andrew Pawley; 3. Event representation, time event relations and clause structure: a cross linguistic study of English and German Mary Carroll and Christiane von Stutterheim; 5.
Linguistic and non-linguistic categorization of complex motion events Jeff Loucks and Eric Pederson; 7. Putting things in places: developmental consequences of linguistic typology Dan I. Language-specific encoding of placement events in gestures Marianne Gullberg; 9. Talking about events Barbara Tversky, Jeffrey M. Rating details. As long as such events are presupposed, but not investigated, we will know little about the cognitive processes involved in the emergence of new social formations and their attendant representations and practices.
We believe that the time is ripe for CSR to incorporate experience in both its commonplace and unusual forms into its conceptual framework. Unlike the CCCs that they enable, BCs are translatable across cultures because they are grounded in evolved mental architecture and embodied interactions with the environment. The point of the BBA, thus, is not simply to reduce CCCs to more basic components, but to reduce in order to understand how people individually or in groups have assembled BCs into various formations.
Because these CCCs take on a plethora of meanings in different theological, scholarly, and popular contexts with boundaries between meanings that are often blurred in practice, Figure 1.
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The BBA research process at the behavioral level: disassembling CCCs into basic concepts, and using them to trace alternative pathways and set up comparisons across socio-cultural formations. We will discuss each of these aspects in separate parts, starting with a brief introduction to event cognition and a discussion of how we can use it to restructure the study of experience. Event cognition 2. Central to this is the notion of an event model, a mental representation of the relevant information that comprises a given event. It will typically represent relevant entities and agents, the relations between them, and the place and time in which the event takes place, mapped from the point of view of the subject.
Besides understanding what is going on around us, we also use event models to forecast future events, imagine hypothetical events, understand events that are narrated to us, and reconstruct memories of past events. Event models are related to memory in complex ways. The working model of what is going on right now is actively maintained in working memory. This schematic information is, in turn, used actively to identify events and to make real-time predictions in event cognition.
The framework is hierarchical in the sense that it generates inference-driven predictions relative to a series of nested levels of sen- sation, perception, and action. For any pair of levels, the higher level will have hypoth- eses that predict the driving bottom-up error signal from the lower level. The higher level will itself provide error signals for a yet higher level. The lower level of the pair will be higher level for a yet lower level. Hohwy et al. Although it is not yet clear how far up the cognitive hierarchy predictive coding holds beyond sensory encoding and perception, event cognition takes place at the level just above perception and is thus still fairly basic.
The model that best explains the scene becomes the working model at t. Researchers need to take the complex interactions between bottom-up expectations and top-down input into account at multiple levels when attempting to explain how and why people understand their experiences in the way they do Figure 2. This Bayesian perspective on how the cognitive system explains its environment provides us with a clearer view of the different components of event cognition.
The working model is privileged above other event models because it predicts the current upstream information. Event segmentation is explained with reference to sudden increases in prediction error brought forward from the lower levels when old predictions no longer explain the driving sensory stream Zacks et al. Furthermore, we can understand event schemata as providing Bayesian prior probabilities that guide top-down predictions.
Experiences as events The language of event cognition allows us to be much more precise in the way we talk about experi- ence. Event cognition as hierarchical predictive system. Error monitoring is an appraisal process.
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Increased error signal i. Based on Kurby and Zacks, Second, borrowing from social psychology, we can distinguish between intended and unintended events Malle, Anscombe, At the level of folk psychology Malle, , people assume that actors have intentions and, thus, can give reasons as explanations for their actions. Unintended events just hap- pen. We offer causes — not reasons — as explanations for unintended events.
Moreover, both intended and unintended events may contain a mix of intended and unintended sub-events, or segments.
Conversely, a dream — an unintended event — may contain many seemingly intended action sub-events. Third, the event cognition literature allows us to locate experience events along a continuum based on the proportion of information derived from external and internal sources. Friston, Internal events include not only such anomalous neural phenomena, however, but also common events like dreams, internal dialogues, fantasies and daydreams, thoughts, and internal voices.
People may experience these internal events as either intended e. This gives us a typology of four different event types Table 1. Event types adapted from Malle, , p.
First, they illustrate that even the most internally generated event can draw upon stored information about past external events. Second, it is important to distinguish between event models as mental models and the event narratives that are based on them. The former are men- tal representations, while the latter are externalized public representations Sperber, , pp. When someone reads the diary or listens to an oral recounting of the dream, they grasp its content by forming a new mental event model to simulate what is being told.
Three positions on accessing experiences and appraisals. By contrast, constructivists have argued that experiential accounts are wholly determined by cultural expectations: there is no raw experience, only appraisals all the way down. Constructionists have also been suspicious of experience on epistemological grounds. Even if there were actual experiences behind public experience narratives, there would be no way for the humanist scholar to access them.
It therefore seemed safer to stay with what could be empirically observed, namely the narratives and their institutional contexts. Experiences, then, result from the interaction between input — in the form of perceptual and sensory cues — and prior knowledge. However, they typically de-emphasized the cues relative to post hoc appraisals and paid little attention to the real-time interaction between cues and tacit appraisals during experience events.
The event cognition framework allows us to model those interactions between input cues and prior knowledge in all their variety much more precisely. These are, essentially, evolved learning systems that allow us to acquire certain schemata with great ease. For example, very limited sensory cues are needed to identify biological systems in motion. All of this contributes to how we segment the event, what we pay attention to, and what we predict will happen next.
If the predictions generated by such a ghost-seeing schema successfully explain those inputs, the subject experiences a ghost. For example, when entering a dim room, a light switch will be salient to anyone who possesses semantic knowledge of how electrically lit rooms are structured, but not to someone who has grown up without electricity. In the presence of such objects, insiders to this cul- tural knowledge may predict and explain sub-events in ways that outsiders would not.
We can illustrate this by returning to the ghost-seeing example. The script draws atten- tion to particular perceptions or sensations, which might not be salient in another script, and triggers evolved inference systems such as agent detection, which heighten the likelihood of attributing agent-like properties to available cues. Because event models are generated through an interaction between prior knowledge and a wide range of input cues that the subject senses and perceives in their environment and within themselves, intentions and causes can be perceived in an event rather than simply attributed post hoc.
Event cognition, thus, offers a complex and nuanced theory of how event models the working model of what is happening right now and, thus, our real-time experience are related to cultural representations and event narratives. Unfortunately, because event models are mental models, we cannot access them directly. We will now consider each of these opportunities separately. The relationship between the original experience and later narratives Event cognition gives us a fresh perspective on the hard problem of how a narrative might relate to an original event.
Apart from unu- sual situations where the public representation in some sense constitutes the experience such as automatic writing and channeling , event narratives are always post hoc and, thus, based on an event model the remembered event generated at the time of narration.
Thus, a narrated event might originate in a working model of a personally experienced event, a situation model derived from something one has heard or read, or a hypothetical situation made up on the spot. Since the event cognition literature stipulates that the same principles will be at work in all these types of event processing, it does not help us determine the difference.
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However, it does specify a number of detailed mechanisms for how narratives are related to mental models. Many practical problems still remain, but we now have a framework for dealing with them more systematically.
For example, while it is certainly true that memory fades with time and accounts of past events may be altered or even wholly invented, event cognition helps us distinguish elements of a narrative that are likely to be inventions or later elaborations from those that are more likely to be accurate. Both externally and internally generated events come with a set of event boundaries that corre- spond to the initial segmentation of experience in the working model. In contrast, surface information e. Figure 3.
Research process for analysis of event narratives. ASPREM Historians can use these features to assess the trustworthiness of experience narratives and gauge what might have been experienced at the time the working model was constructed. For example, they can infer that details at event boundaries are more likely to be accurate that is, correspond with the original model than details far away from such shifts. They may also assume that sudden, abrupt events will be particularly well remembered and faithfully narrated.
For example, if information comes to light after initial event processing that would make certain kinds of surface details more relevant than they were during initial encod- ing, details may be highlighted or elaborated when the model is recreated post hoc. While building on a previous event i. Such invention would, however, not be evidence of deceit, but rather of a normally functioning system of event processing that pays attention to what- ever it perceives as causally relevant information. The relationship between experiences and appraisals Event models also allow us to conceptualize the relationship between experience and appraisal in a more nuanced fashion.