Functional similarities between bimanual coordination and topic/comment structure [article]

Manfred Krifka, Anne Schwarz, Stefanie Jannedy, Shinichiro Ishihara, Humboldt-Universität Zu Berlin, Humboldt-Universität Zu Berlin
Human manual action exhibits a differential use of a non-dominant (typically, left) and a dominant (typically, right) hand. Human communication exhibits a pervasive structuring of utterances into topic and comment. I will point out striking similarities between the coordination of hands in bimanual actions, and the structuring of utterances in topics and comments. I will also show how principles of bimanual coordination influence the expression of topic/comment structure in sign languages and
more » ... ign languages and in gestures accompanying spoken language, and suggest that bimanual coordination might have been a preadaptation of the development of information structure in human communication.
doi:10.18452/9509 fatcat:32aucta6evfybcavpqchnmqyjq