Can a Bodily Theorist of Pain Speak Mandarin?

Philosophia:1-12 (forthcoming)
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Abstract
According to a bodily view of pain, pains are objects which are located in body parts. This bodily view is supported by the locative locutions for pain in English, such as that “I have a pain in my back.” Recently, Liu and Klein (Analysis, 80(2), 262–272, 2020) carry out a cross-linguistic analysis, and they claim that (1) Mandarin has no locative locutions for pain and (2) the absence of locative locutions for pain puts the bodily view at risk. This paper rejects both claims. Regarding the philosophical claim, I argue that a language without locative locutions for pain only poses a limited challenge to the bodily view. Regarding the empirical claim, I identify the possible factors which might have misled Liu and Klein about the locative locutions for pain in Mandarin, and argue that Mandarin has a wide range of locative locutions for pain by conducting a corpus analysis. I conclude that compared to English, Mandarin lends no less, if not more, support to the bodily view of pain.
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Archival date: 2021-03-27
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