We are happy to announce a talk by Cornelia Ebert, Kurt Erbach and Magnus Poppe (Frankfurt) in the Semantics Colloquium.

The talk will take place on campus in IG 4.301.

Title: Experimental findings for a cross-modal account of dynamic binding in gesture-speech interaction

Date: November 2, 2023

Time: 4 pm – 6 pm ct

In our talk, we theoretically and experimentally discuss dynamic semantic phenomena of pronoun and presupposition binding and point out how these phenomena reappear in the domain of gesture-speech interaction.

Building on the unidimensional dynamic approach of Ebert & Ebert (2014) (based on Anderbois’ et al. (2015) account for handling appositive meanings), we suggest a cross-modal account where pointing gestures and iconic gestures introduce discourse referents for rigid designators that can be anaphorically picked up by pronouns (expressed in speech or gesturally). One option for the introduction of gestural discourse referents is by fixing a certain locus in the gesture space that stands for the gesture concept and can serve for further anaphorical uses.

We will discuss such dynamic binding of gesture and further phenomena of dynamic binding across modalities and how they can be handled in a formal semantic model. Furthermore, we report experimental results of two experiments on pronoun and presupposition binding across modalities and show that (1) ordinary pronouns (in the spoken/written domain) can be dynamically bound to gesturally introduced discourse referents and (2) that presuppositions induced by presupposition triggers in the spoken/written domain (as e.g. “again” or “too”) can be bound to and satisfied by propositions that have been introduced in the gestural domain.