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Polygence Scholar2022
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Linus Law

Phillips Academy AndoverClass of 2024Painted Post, NY



  • "English, Chinese, and Temporal Reference Frames" with mentor Elaine (July 17, 2022)

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English, Chinese, and Temporal Reference Frames

Started Mar. 15, 2022

Abstract or project description

There has been and continues to be a significant amount of studies examining the effect that language has on how humans perceive the world. In particular, it has been suggested that metaphors used for time affect people’s representations of time. One of the ways representations of time may differ is in their reference frame. There are two basic reference frames for time: ego-moving and time-moving. An ego-moving reference frame is where a person perceives themselves as going through stationary time (the ego, or self, is moving)  while a time-moving reference frame is where a person thinks of time as coming towards time - i.e. time is what moves. The classic understanding is thus: ego-moving is as if one thinks of oneself as riding a train through time, while time-moving is as if one sees a train that represents time traveling towards oneself. Previous studies have observed that Mandarin and English speakers tend to use different reference frames of time. This paper attempts to summarize and analyze the research that has been done on this topic as well as suggest future research directions.