PD Dr. Martin Thiering

Gastwissenschaftler

Akademischer Werdegang

seit März 2016: Fellow Bibliotheca Herziania – Max-Planck-Institut für Kunstgeschichte, Rom: Projekt mit Prof. Dr. Tanja Michalsky und Prof. Günther Görz: »Kognitive Karten: Räumliche Referenzrahmen, Toponyme und Landmarken bei Flavio Biondo«

seit Febr. 2015: Privatdozent an der Technischen Universität (TU) Berlin, Allgemeine Linguistik 

seit Nov. 2012: Fellow und Koordinator der Area C-5-1 Common Sense Geography and Mental Modelling im TOPOI Ex­zellenzcluster 264, Prof. Dr. Klaus Geus 

seit 2011: Lehrbeauftragter an der TU Berlin, Allgemeine Linguistik 

seit 2009: Dozent an der Humboldt-Universität (HU) zu Berlin, Philosophie I

Nov. 2012–Juli 2014: Visiting Scholar am Max-Planck-Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte (MPIWG), Berlin 

11. Juni 2014: Habilitationskolloquium an der TU Berlin, Allge­meine Linguistik,

Venia legendi in Kognitiver Linguistik

Jan.–September 2014: Gastforscher in der Kolleg-Forschergruppe Bildakt und Verkörperung, Ber­lin, Prof. Dr. Horst Bredekamp und Prof. Dr. Jürgen Trabant

Okt. 2013: Einreichung der Habilitationsschrift (»Spatial Semiotics and Spatial Mental Models: Figure–Ground Asym­metries in Spatial Language and Cognition«) im Fachbereich Allgemeine Lingustik, TU Berlin 

Mai–Juli 2013: Gastdozent im TOPOI Exzellenzcluster 264, Area C-5-1: Common Sense Geography and Mental Modelling, Prof. Dr. Klaus Geus

Sept. 2008–Okt. 2012: Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter der HU Berlin und Visiting Scholar am MPIWG, TOPOI Exzellenzcluster 264, Dr. Matthias Schemmel und Prof. Dr. Jürgen Renn, Area E-II: Historische Epistemologie des Raumes: Erfah­rung und theoretische Reflexion in der geschichtlichen Entwicklung räum­licher Erkenntnis

2006–2007: Postdoktorand und Research Associate bei Prof. Dr. Ray Jackendoff und Prof. Dr. Daniel Dennett, Center for Cognitive Studies, Tufts Univer­sity/MIT, USA 

2001–2007: Ph.D. am Fachbereich für Linguistik, University of Alberta, Kanada

Titel der Dissertation: »The Construction of Topological Space«

1994–2001: Magisterstudium der Angewandten Linguistik und Skandinavistik an der Universität Hamburg (Titel der Magisterarbeit: »Das mentale Lexikon in der L2-Sprachproduktion«)

Webseite inklusive ausführlichem CV: https://www.linguistik.tu-berlin.de/menue/mitarbeiterinnen/privatdozentinnen/martin_thiering/

Forschung

Thiering's research starts with the very general assumption that humans move in space on a daily basis and as a daily practice, they consciously talk about space, and unconsciously use spatial metaphors. As a semiotic system language plays a crucial role in the instantiation of immediate and mediate spatial relations. Humans mark different aspects of spatial scenes, they mentally rotate relationships and they include a variety of aspects based on their knowledge systems, for instance, encyclopedic knowledge. Therefore it is fair to state that spatial language and spatial cognition is a perpetual companion for human life. Thiering's point of departure is to investigate more fully the subject of spatial mental models or image schemas based on linguistic cues, and spatial practices as distribute cognition. As is known from the literature mental models are cognitive knowledge structures based on perceptual and phenomenological experience. These models map spatial structures onto conceptual structures. As Thiering argues, these structures are based on cognitive fundamentals of mental triangulation and gestalt principles, such as figure-ground asymmetries. According to gestalt theory, certain gestalt principles apply, including proximity, similarity, good continuation, closure, convexity, exhaustiveness, symmetry, concision (German Prägnanz) and past experiences. Cognitive contours construe visual anchor points of the respective gestalt. Besides this, it is argued that figure-ground relations are specifically determined by surroundedness, size, orientation, contrast, symmetry, convexity and parallelism. In addition, scope, scale and the various stage construals as seen in the choice of frames of reference are also of importance. Gestalt theory holds that humans constantly construe visually based relationships between a smaller, moveable object related to a larger, often not moving object. The crucial aspect is the ability to notice the different characteristics of a spatial situation or of a speech act, that is, the ability to perceive a gestalt or to see aspects (Aspektsehen, as Wittgenstein calls these constructions). Theories of perceptual constraints on visual perception and cognition arising from gestalt theory and phenomenological approaches mean that the impact of language and hence symbolic function on the construal of a visual scene is now only partially at issue. Thiering takes research gestalt principles at face value, arguing in favor of a constant interplay between different information cues encoded in distributed cognition. According to Humboldt different languages encode different worldviews (Weltansicht). Thiering has shown in numerous publications that language as a form of symbolic encoding pattern is based on spatial mental models. As such, languages follow perceptual, experiential and environmental input. Hence, it is not only language acting upon cognition, but also vice versa. General cognitive abilities shape language and that language structures relate directly to cognitive processing. Thiering promotes the idea that different languages point to different encoding decisions based on cultural-specific spatial mental models. He also argues that cultural knowledge is (re)presented in symbolic practices and thus interwoven with cognitive structures and cognitive semantics in particular.

Publikationen

Monografien

2017. Einführung in die Kognitive Semantik und kognitive Anthropologie. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton Studienbuch.

2015. Spatial Semiotics and Spatial Mental Models: Figure-Ground Asymmetries in Spa­tial Language and Cognition. Applied Cognitive Linguistics, 27, hg. von Gitte Kristiansen und Francisco J. Ruiz de Mendoza Ibáñez. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton.

(Mit-)Herausgeberschaften 

2017. Hg. zus. mit Klaus Geus. Features of Common Sense Geography, Vol. 2: Landmarks. Wien/Berlin: LIT.

2014. Hg. zus. mit Klaus Geus. Features of Common Sense Geography: Implicit Knowledge Structures in Ancient Geographical Texts. Wien/Berlin: LIT.

2014. Hg. Die Neo-Whorfian Theorie: Das Wiedererstarken des linguistischen Relativitäts­prinzips. Sonderband der Zeitschrift für Semiotik 35, 1/2.

Peer-Reviewed Zeitschriftenartikel 

2016. Zus. mit Johan Blomberg. Spatial Phenomenology and Cognitive Linguistics. Metodo 4/2.

2013. Die Neo-Whorfian Theorie: Das Wiedererstarken des linguistischen Relativitäts­prinzips, in: Die Neo-Whorfian Theorie: Das Wiedererstarken des linguistischen Relativitäts­prinzips. Sonderband der Zeitschrift für Semiotik 35, 1/2, 3–29.

2011. Figure-ground reversals in language. Gestalt Theory 33, 3/4, 245–276.

Peer-Reviewed Buchkapitel

2015. Zus. mit Wulf Schiefenhövel. Representations of spaces in Eipo and Dene Chipe­wyan: Spatial language and environment. In: Matthias Schemmel (Hg.). Spatial Thinking and External Representation: Towards a Historical Epistemology of Space. Pre­print Serie Max-Planck-Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte, Berlin: MPIWG Edition Open Access.

2014. Implicit knowledge structures as mental models in common sense geography. In: Klaus Geus und Martin Thiering (Hg.). Features of Common Sense Geography: Implicit Knowledge Structures in Ancient Geographical Texts. Wien/Berlin: LIT, 265–317.

2014. Zus. mit Günther Görz und Ekaterina Ilyushechkina. Towards a cognitive-linguistic reconstruction of the spatial orientation in ancient texts – The example of Dionysios Periegetes. In: Klaus Geus und Martin Thiering (Hg.). Features of Common Sense Geography: Implicit Knowledge Structures in Ancient Geographical Texts. Wien/Berlin: LIT, 245–263.

2014. Zus. mit Klaus Geus. Common sense geography and mental modelling: Setting the stage. In: Klaus Geus und Martin Thiering (Hg.). Features of Common Sense Geo­graphy: Implicit Know­ledge Structures in Ancient Geographical Texts. Wien/Berlin: LIT, 5–15.

2014. Cognitive maps of landmark orientation. In: Luna Filipovic und Martin Pütz (Hg.). Multilingual Cognition and Language Use: Processing and Typological Perspec­tives. Human Cognitive Processing Series, 44. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: Benjamins, 151–182.

2013. Degree of specificity in spatial semantics. In: Monika Reif, Justyna Robin­son und Martin Pütz (Hg.). Variation in Language and Language Use: Linguistic, Socio-Cultural and Cognitive Perspectives. Duisburg Papers on Research in Language and Culture, 96. Frankfurt am Main: Lang, 367–420.

2012. Praktik. In: Stephan Günzel (Hg.). Lexikon der Raumphilosophie. Darmstadt: Wis­senschaftli­che Buchgesell­schaft, 312–313.

2012. Referenzrahmen. In: Stephan Günzel (Hg.). Lexikon der Raumphilosophie. Darm­stadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, 336.

2012. Spur. In: Stephan Günzel (Hg.). Lexikon der Raumphilosophie. Darmstadt: Wissen­schaftli­che Buchgesell­schaft, 385–386.

2009. Language loss in spatial semantics: Dene Suline. In: Jim Stanford und Dennis Preston (Hg.). An Anthology on Quantitative Sociolinguistic Studies of Indigenous Minority Languages. Variationist Approaches to Indigenous Minority Languages. Philadelphia: Benjamins, 485–516.

Conference Pre-/Proceedings und Working Papers

2013. Zus. mit Günther Görz und Ekaterina Ilyushechkina. Towards a cognitive linguistic recon­struction of “mental maps” from antique texts – the example of Dio­nysios Periegetes. In: Bernadette Sharp und Michael Zock (Hg.). Pro­ceedings of the 10th International Workshop on Natural Language Processing and Cogni­tive Science, Marseille: NLPCS, 20–34.

2013. Zus. mit Wulf Schiefenhövel. Spatial Concepts in Non-Literate Societies: Language and Practice in Eipo and Dene Chipewyan. TOPOI – Towards a Histori­cal Episte­mology of Space. Preprint Serie Max-Planck-Institut für Wissenschaftsge­schichte, 447. Berlin: MPIWG.

2012. Zus. mit Klaus Geus. Common sense geography and mental modelling: Ope­ning the stage. In: Klaus Geus und Martin Thiering (Hg.). Common Sense Geo­graphy and Mental Model­ling. Preprint Serie Max-Planck-Institute für Wissen­schaftsge­schichte, 426, Berlin: MPIWG, 2–10.

2012. Hg. zus. mit Klaus Geus. Common Sense Geography and Mental Modelling. Pre­print Serie Max-Planck-Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte, 426, Berlin: MPIWG. 

2012. Topographical coordinates and spatial language. Cognitive Psycholinguistics: Bi­lingua­lism, Cognition and Communication. Preceedings of the 35th International LAUD Sympo­sium. Universität Koblenz-Landau: LAUD, 1–58.

2011. Zus. mit Jürgen Renn und Matthias Schemmel. Space as Transformed in the History of Sci­ence. Historical Epistemology of Space: Experience and Theoretical Reflec­tion in the Historical Development of Spatial Knowledge. In: Friederike Fless, Gerd Graßhoff und Mi­chael Meyer (Hg.). Reports of the Research Groups at the Topoi Plenary Session 2010. Sonderausgabe eTopoi. Journal for Ancient Studies, 1–11.

2010. Intralingual variation of spatial concepts in an Athapaskan language. Cognitive So­ciolin­guistics: Language Variation in its Structural, Conceptual and Cultural Di­mensions. Pre­ceedings of the 34th International LAUD Symposium. Universität Koblenz-Landau: LAUD, 92–123.

2009. Linguistic Categorization of Topological Spatial Relations. TOPOI – Towards a Historical Epistemology of Space. Preprint Serie Max-Planck-Institut für Wissen­schaftsgeschichte, 373, Berlin: MPIWG, 1–76.

2007. The Construction of Topological Space. Dissertation, University of Alberta, De­partment of Linguistics. Ottawa: Library and Archives Canada (microfiche).

2007. Basic Locative Predications in Totonac. Tufts Working Papers. Medford: Tufts University, Center for Cognitive Studies.

2007. Coercion in German and English vs. Dene. Tufts University. Tufts Working Papers. Medford: Tufts University, Center for Cognitive Studies.

2006. Topological relations in an Athapaskan language. University of Alberta Working Papers, Vol.1. (http://www.linguistics.ualberta.ca/Research/WorkingPapers/UAWPLArchive/ Volume12006.aspx).

2005. The Spatial Categorization Elicitation Tool (SPACE). Entwickelt am Fachbereich für Linguistik, University of Alberta, Eigentum des Autoren und des Daghida-Pro­jekts (Prof. Dr. Sally Rice).

2004. A case study on language loss: Spatial semantics in Dene Suline. Alaska Native Language Center Working Papers 4.

2004. A corpus-based semantic analysis of Norwegian se. 7th Conceptual Structure, Dis­course & Language, University of Alberta, Kanada, 8.–10. Oktober, 1–23.