What does hand express in Chinese and Spanish?
This study focuses on the body-part hand in Mandarin Chinese and Spanish with the majority of the data taken from Chinese Mandarin Online Dictionary and Web edition of Lin Yutang s Chinese-English Dictionary of Modern Usage. The Spanish data were obtained from Corpus de Referencia del Español Actual de la Real Academia Española and Lanbridge Diccionario Manual Español-Chino. The research questions are: (1) What meanings do the hand expressions in both languages convey? (2) What are the meanings based on? (3) Is there a cognitive model behind them? The answer of the third question is based on that of the first two. We found that (a) +people, +action, and +power are the most frequently occurring semantic molecules for hand expressions, (b) the favorite underlying conceits that generate hand expressions are behavior and function , (c) BODY IS FUNCTION proves true, and (d) we propose that BODY IS STATIC is more fundamental based on the observation in hand expressions.