International Symposium




28th–29th June 2019

Rijeka (Croatia)


Conference venue: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Rijeka

Sveučilišna avenija 4, Rijeka, Croatia



Book of abstracts



Conference Programme


This symposium has been fully supported by the Croatian Science Foundation under the project number IP-2018-01-2243 “Semantic domains of deictic words: Investigating the fast semantic processes in language (DeicTeS)”


FRIDAY, 28th June 2019


Registration – 1st FLOOR (in front of room 138)


Opening of the conference (Room: 138)


Plenary lecture (Room: 138)

Peter Gärdenfors (University of Lund)

Deixis from Gesture via Demonstratives to Articles. (A Study in Deixis for a Theory of Mind)


Session A

Chairing: Marija Brala-Vukanović


Martina Irsara

English locative ‘here’ and ‘there’ as perceived by speakers of other languages


Enikő Tóth  

Hungarian demonstratives in contrastive contexts


Coffee break – In the 1st floor hall  

Student posters presentation in the hall


Session B

Chairing: Marija Brala-Vukanović


Cornelia Ebert, Robin Hörnig, Susanne Fuchs, Aleksandra Ćwiek, Manfred Krifka

Experimental evidence on the non-at-issueness of co-speech gestures and demonstratives as dimension shifters


Carla Umbach, Britta Stolterfoht

Demonstratives of Manner, Quality and Degree – constraints on features of comparison


Martin Janečka

Deictics, pictographs, emblems: how aphasic people compensate verbal deficit with gestures


Lunch break – In the 1st floor hall



Plenary lecture (Room: 138)

Holger Diessel (University of Jena)

Demonstratives: From gesture to grammar


Session C

Chairing: Anita Memišević


Valentina Colasanti, Martina Wiltschko

Spatial and discourse deixis and the speech act structure of nominals


Ekkehard Koenig

Beyond exophoric and endophoric uses: Additional discourse functions of demonstratives


Coffee break – In the 1st floor hall


Session D

Chairing: Anita Memišević


Agnieszka Jędrusik

Dynamic Nature of Deixis in Political Discourse: an Analysis of the Political Debates between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump


Nichuta Bunkham, Karl Seifen, Alice Vittrant

Encoding Dynamic Deixis: Examples from Southeast Asia


Jinke Song

The encoding of Dynamic Deixis in Standard Chinese – an investigation of linguistic and extra-linguistic factors


Xuping Li, Yiming Sheng

The D type and the Dem type of definite classifiers in Wu


Dinner – In the 1st floor hall


SATURDAY, 29th June 2019


Plenary lecture (Room: 138 )

Ljiljana Šarić (University of Oslo) & Svetlana Nedelcheva (Konstantin Preslavsky University of Shumen)

Deictic verbs of motion: A corpus-based study of (South) Slavic


Session E

Chairing: Mihaela Matešić


Clément Voirin, Anetta Kopecka

Encoding deictic motion: language specific tendencies in translation


Paweł Rutkowski

Is space a grammatical feature? The case of Polish Sign Language


Coffee break – In the 1st floor hall


Session F

Chairing: Mihaela Matešić


Biljana Stojanovska

The Definite Article in the Macedonian Language


Paola Bocale

Deixis and irrealis in Slavic


Anita Memišević

What happens when a couple meets ménage a trois, and vice versa?


Lunch break – In the 1st floor hall


ROUND TABLE (Room 121): Demonstratives, Deixis and Beyond

Introductory paper: Marija Brala-Vukanović and Mihaela Matešić: Demonstratives as Deictic Terms and Beyond


City tour






Symposium Call



Deixis in language – From gestures to words

WHERE: University or Rijeka, Croatia

WHEN: 28-29 June, 2019

Deictic expressions take an intermediary position between gestures and words. Although the concept of deixis and the basic deictic categories are well known and have been widely described in the linguistic literature, there exists a variety of positions regarding to the exact semantic interpretation of the phenomenon as such. In other words, there are still open questions concerning their role in communication.

Departing from the view that our understanding of the language system is crucially linked to the types of meanings expressed in languages of the world, and the types of processing mechanisms linked to different word types, one of the central objectives of this symposium is to try and explore the link between the gestures, pointing, deixis and language processes.

The aims of the symposium are aimed at providing further insights into: a) the semantic domains expressed by deictic words; b) the cognitive and linguistic mechanisms involved in deictic communicative processes; c) the differences between semantic and pragmatic functions of deictic terms.

Keywords: deixis, cognitive semantics, fast semantic processing, demonstratives, gestures, pointing

Keynote speakers:

Professor Holger Diessel, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, Germany

Professor Peter Gardenfors, Lund University, Sweden

Professor Danijela Trenkic, University of York, U.K.

Professor Henriette Hendriks, University of Cambridge, U.K.

Professor Ljiljana Šarić, University of Oslo, Norway

Professor Svetlana Nedelcheva, Konstantin Preslavsky University of Shumen, Bulgaria



Submissions are invited for both talks and posters in any area of deictic communication, including (but not limited to):

Cross-linguistic perspectives on deictic language.

The linguistics of deictic expressions.

The evolution of deictic terms.

Deixis and grammaticalization.

The psycholinguistics of deictic expressions.

Elevation as a Deictic Category.

Less-known / rare deictic categories.

Language and gesture in spoken versus sign languages.

Co-speech, pro-speech and post-speech gestures.

Deictic communication across the lifespan.

Deictic communication across species.

Gestures in non-human animals, such as chimpanzees and other great apes


Abstract Submission

We invite abstracts of no more than 500 words, not including references. Abstracts must report previously unpublished work.  Abstracts should include a clear statement of the theoretical issue to be addressed, the research methodology to be presented, and a concise summary of the findings/conclusion. Only one submission will be accepted by the same first-author and a maximum of 2 co-authored submissions.

Send your abstracts to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Please put DEICTES 2019 as the subject of your submission

Important Dates:

February 20, 2019: Submission deadline (abstracts for talks and poster)

March 1, 2019: Notification of Acceptance

March 31, 2019: Registration Opens

May 25, 2019: Registration Ends

June 28-29, 2019: Symposium dates


Programme Chair:    Professor Marija M. Brala-Vukanović, The University of Rijeka, Croatia

Chair of Local Organising Committee:  Professor Mihaela Matešić, The University of Rijeka, Croatia

Administrative support:    Martina Baričević, Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


The conference is made possible thanks to The Croatian National Science Foundation (HRZZ). The Symposium is organized as part of the project entitled ‘Semantic domains of deictic words’ (DEICTES), HRZZ grant agreement No. P-2018-01-2243)