Joost Zwarts

Linguist at Utrecht University, specialized in semantics (the study of meaning in language)



Research interests

Biblical metaphors: How does the Bible use imagery to shape its concepts? See Biblical metaphors for more information.

The formal semantics of collective categorizationas part of Yoad Winter's ERC Advanced Grant project ROCKY that studies "the linguistic ability to conceptualize collections".

Semantic maps and conceptual spaces: How are word meanings organized in semantic maps and conceptual spaces and how can such maps and spaces be visualized?

Prepositions and the language of space: How do we use small words (like in) to talk about spatial (and other) relations?

Recent writings

Zwarts, J. (in press). Prepositions and particles: Place and path in English, German, and Dutch. In M. Putnam & R. Page (Eds.), Cambridge Handbook of Germanic Linguistics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Zwarts, J. (in press). From “back” to “again” in Dutch: The structure of the “re” domain. Journal of Semantics.

Zwarts, J. (2018). Shifting animacy shifts. Theoretical Linguistics, 44(1–2), 107.

Zwarts, J. (2017). The meanings of μέλος: The polysemy of Paul’s member metaphor. Ms., Utrecht University.

Le Bruyn, B., de Swart, H., & Zwarts, J. (2017). Bare nominals. In M. Aronoff (Ed.), Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Linguistics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Zwarts, J. (2017). Spatial semantics: Modeling the meaning of prepositions. Language and Linguistics Compass, 11(5), 1–20.

Matushansky, O., & Zwarts, J. (2017). Making space for measures. In A. Lamont & K. Tetzloff (Eds.), Proceedings of NELS 47 (Vol. 2). Amherst, MA: GLSA.


Upcoming talks

The Louw-Nida lexicon as an extendable source of metaphors. Annual Meeting of the Society of Biblical Literature, Denver, November 17-20 2018.