Iconic signs, motivated semantic networks, and the nature of conceptualization
This chapter attempts to demonstrate how certain mental space images are structurally reflected in their corresponding iconic signs in Japan Sign Language (JSL). Section one provides a general introduction, and section two offers a brief summary of the framework developed by Tyler and Evans (2001, 2003) for explaining the relationship among imagic proto-scenes, spatial scenes, and polysemy, used throughout the chapter. In section three, detailed illustrations of the polysemy network formed by such proto-scenes for the English preposition ‘over’ are provided and then compared with numerous related JSL signs. In section four, it is conclud-ed that the proto-scenes proposed by Tyler and Evans appear to be reflected rather directly in the related iconic signs of JSL, providing indirect support for the existence of such imagic proto-scenes.