The Kata Kolok pointing system: Morphemization and syntactic integration

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Signed utterances are densely packed with pointing signs, reaching a frequency of one in six signs in spontaneous conversations (de Vos, 2012; Johnston, 2013a; Morford MacFarlane, 2003). These pointing signs attain a wide range of functions and are formally highly diversified. Based on corpus analysis of spontaneous pointing signs in Kata Kolok, a rural signing variety of Bali, this paper argues that the full meaning potentials of pointing signs come about through the integration of a varied set of linguistic and extralinguistic cues. Taking this hybrid nature of point- ing phenomena into account, it is argued that pointing signs may become an intrinsic aspect of sign language grammars through two mechanisms: morphemization and syntactic integration. Although not entailed in this research, this approach could implicate that some highly systema- tized pointing systems of speaking communities may to a degree be grammatical as well.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)150-168
Number of pages19
JournalTopics in Cognitive Science
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'The Kata Kolok pointing system: Morphemization and syntactic integration'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this