UVA's Mark Sicoli coauthor of PNAS paper on the coding of perception in the world's languages

Mark Sicoli, Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Linguistics published a paper “Differential coding of perception in the world’s languages” in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, where it is demonstrated that, contrary to longstanding assumptions of western science, languages do not universally encode a hierarchy of the senses with sight and hearing privileged over touch, taste, and smell. Working with 20 world languages including 3 sign languages the research found that languages differ widely in what senses are lexically elaborated with differences best explained through cultural preoccupations rather than appeal to biological universals. The article is available here: http://www.pnas.org/content/115/45/11369