Reciprocals across languages

A project funded by the Australian Research Council, under the Discovery Grant Scheme (Project ID DP0343354)

Timeframe: 2003-2005

Overview

Reciprocity lies at the heart of social organization and human evolution, and the world's 5000 languages all represent distinct solutions to the problem of how to represent and reason about reciprocity, using the resources of grammar, lexicon, prosody, gesture, and inference from context. This project examined how reciprocity is expressed, and the different subtypes of reciprocal meaning, by carrying out detailed linguistic fieldwork on fourteen little-known languages of Australia and its region. The fieldwork on the undescribed (and in many cases endangered) languages was supplemented by a typological survey of how the various notions of reciprocity are expressed in languages around the world, and on the coding or reciprocity in grammar.

Project publications

The following works in progress can be downloaded as pdfs

Project personnel

Name

Role

Email address

Nicholas Evans Chief Investigator NRDE@unimelb.edu.au
Rachel NordlingerCo-Chief Investigator RachelN@unimelb.edu.au
Ulrike Zeshan Partner Investigator U.Zeshan@latrobe.edu.au
Steve Levinson Partner Investigator Stephen.Levinson@mpi.nl
Leila Behrens Visiting Researcher LB@unimelb.edu.au
Leila.Behrens@uni-koeln.de
Ruth Singer PhD Student R.Singer@pgrad.unimelb.edu.au
Alice Gaby PhD Student Alice.Gaby@mpi.nl
Sebastian Fedden PhD Student O.Fedden@pgrad.unimelb.edu.au
Peter Hurst PhD Student phurst@pgrad.unimelb.edu.au
Meladel Mistika Research Assistant Meladel@bigpond.com
Ian Tupper Research Assistant IanTupper2260@yahoo.com.au
Alan Lee Research Assistant/
Web-site Maintenance
A.Lee16@ugrad.unimelb.edu.au

Other information