Sitting, Standing, and Lying in Frames: A Frame-Based Approach to Posture Verbs
Posture verbs which allow for an extended locative use, such as sit, stand and lie, make reference to specific parts of the localized object, to the orientation of prominent object axes and to positional information, which are perceived by means of cognitive modules such as gestalt recognition and spatial perception. These properties render posture verbs an excellent object for the investigation of cognition and language. This paper analyzes the three basic posture verbs of German (sitzen ‘sit’, stehen ‘stand’ and liegen ‘lie’) in terms of frame representations. It turns out that frames can serve as a highly flexible device for decompositional analyses that is at the same time a cognitively plausible knowledge representation format.