Journal article

Family in mind: Socio-spatial knowledge in a Ngaatjatjarra/Ngaanyatjarra children’s game’

J GREEN, E Ellis, I Kral

Research on Children and Social Interaction | Equinox Publishing Ltd | Published : 2017


In the Ngaanyatjarra Lands in remote Western Australia children play a guessing game called mama mama ngunytju ngunytju ‘father father mother mother’. It is mainly girls who play the game, along with other members of their social network, including age-mates, older kin and adults. They offer clues about target referents and establish mutual understandings through multimodal forms of representation that include semi-conventionalized drawings on the sand. In this paper we show how speech, gesture, and graphic schemata are negotiated and identify several recurrent themes, particularly family in mind focusing on the domains of kinship and spatial awareness. We discuss the implications this case..

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University of Melbourne Researchers