Colorado Research in Linguistics

Document Type

Working Paper


Although languages use a variety of methods to express spatial topological relations, it has generally been assumed that the underlying conceptual categories are universal. However, recent cross-linguistic research has challenged the UNIVERSAL CONCEPTUAL CATEGORIES hypothesis on a variety of levels. The goals of this paper are two-fold: First, to analyze and describe the basic locative construction in Lakhota, a Siouan language. Second, since Lakhota is often thought to break other typological universals, the Lakhota data are evaluated against three versions of the UNIVERSAL CONCEPTUAL CATEGORIES hypothesis. The preliminary results seem to indicate that neither the strong view nor its successively weaker versions can account for the Lakhota data described here.



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