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Color Categories in Thought and Language



Twenty-five years ago, Berlin and Kay argued that there are commonalities of basic color term use that extend across languages and cultures, and probably express universal features of perception and cognition. In this volume, a distinguished team of contributors from visual science, psychology, linguistics and anthropology examine how these claims have fared in the light of current knowledge, surveying key ideas, results and techniques from the study of human color vision as well as field methods and theoretical interpretations drawn from linguistic anthropology.

Table of Contents:

1. Introduction. C. L. Hardin and Luisa Maffi

Part I. The World Color Survey:

2. Color naming across languages. Paul Kay, Brent Berlin, Luisa Maffi and William Merrifield

Part II. Visual Psychologists:

3. The psychophysics of color. Bill Wooten, David L. Miller

4. Physiological mechanisms of color vision. Israel Abramov

5. The neuropsychology of color. Jules Davidoff

6. Insights gained from naming the OSA colors. Robert M. Boynton

7. Beyond the elements: investigations of hue. David L. Miller

8. Color systems for cognitive research. Lars Sivik

Part III. Anthropologists and Linguists:

9. Establishing basic color terms: measures and techniques. Greville G. Corbett and Ian R. L. Davies

10. Color shift: evolution of English color terms from brightness to hue. Ronald Casson

11. Two observations on culture contact and the Japanese color nomenclature system. James Stanlaw

12. Skewing and darkening: dynamics of the cool category. Robert E. MacLaury

13. Genes, opsins, neurons, and color categories: closing the gaps. Stephen L. Zegura

Part IV. Dissenting Voices:

14. It's not really red, green, yellow, blue: an inquiry into perpetual color space. Kimberly Jameson and Roy G. D'Andrade

15. The linguistics of 'color'. John A. Lucy

16. Closing thoughts. Luisa Maffi and C. L. Hardin.

An outstanding edited collection that summarizes the state of research on the linkages among visual neurophysiology and neuropsychology, color perception, color categories, and color naming. Although the emphasis is on the integration of contemporary opponent process theories of color vision and findings from the World Color Survey (WCS) of color terms in a large sample of languages, the volume is unusual in its inclusion of a range of positions, including researchers who strongly question the methods and initial conclusions of the WCS. Several of the individual papers in the collection are among the best brief, clear, and rigorous treatments of important topics in the physiology, psychology, and linguistics of color. The book as a whole is superb case study in how research evolves, in science generally, and in cognitive science more specifically. Advanced undergraduate to graduate level. 



  • Number Of Pages:   416
  • Publication Date:   1997-08-28
  • ISBN-10 / ASIN:   0521498007
  • ISBN-13 / EAN:   9780521498005

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    Tags: color, anthropology, surveying, knowledge, results, Color, color, Categories, Thought