Articles | Volume 72, issue 4
Standard article
14 Dec 2017
Standard article |  | 14 Dec 2017

Forests: the cross-linguistic perspective

Niclas Burenhult, Clair Hill, Juliette Huber, Saskia van Putten, Konrad Rybka, and Lila San Roque

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Cited articles

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Bromhead, H.: The Bush in Australian English, Aust. J. Linguist., 31, 445–471, 2011.
Burenhult, N. (Ed.): Landscape and language: geographical ontology in cross-linguistic perspective, Lang. Sci. (special issue), 30, 2008a.
Burenhult, N.: Spatial coordinate systems in demonstrative meaning, Linguistic Typology, 12, 99–142, 2008b.
Chomsky, N.: The science of language: interviews with James McGilvray, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2012.
Short summary
In this paper we explore semantic diversity observed in relation to forests. We do so on the basis of first-hand linguistic field data from a global sample of indigenous categorization systems as they are manifested in six diverse languages. We show that basic linguistic categories relating to tree cover vary considerably in their principles of semantic encoding across languages, and that forest is a challenging category from the point of view of intercultural translatability.