In this project, we explore to what extent the cognitive units speakers construct to verbalize motion events correlate with the units that people derive in non-verbal tasks, as can be measured, for example, by use of the Newtson-task.
Event segmentation: Cross-linguistic differences in verbal and non-verbal tasks (Gerwien/von Stutterheim, article accepted)
In the first study of this project, we tested verbal and non-verbal unit formation in speakers of French and German. The main experimental manipulation concerned a change in direction/orientation of the moving figure. We hypothesized that speakers of French are more sensitive to those changes, compared to speakers of German.
The effects of boundary crossing on event unit formation (Wutz/Gerwien, in preparation)
The second study follows up on the findings from the first study: Speakers of French are more likely to perceive changes in direction/orientation of a moving figure as breakpoints, compared to speakers of German. Here, we investigate the role of relative attention to endpoints and the relative salience of spatial boundary crossing in unit formation, again for speakers of French and German.