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Language origins - Maggie Tallerman

9780199279043
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Title
Language origins - perspectives on evolution
Author
Maggie Tallerman
format
Paperback / softback
Publisher
Oxford University Press
Language
English
UK Publication Date
20050526

This book addresses central questions in the evolution of language: where it came from; how it relates to primate communication; how and why it evolved; how it came to be culturally transmitted; and how languages diversified. The chapters are written from the perspective of the latest work in linguistics, neuroscience, psychology, and computer science, and reflect the idea that various cognitive, physical, neurological, social, and cultural prerequisites led to thedevelopment of full human language. Some of these evolutionary changes were preadaptations for language, while others were adaptive changes allowing the development of particular linguistic characteristics. The authors consider a broad spectrum of ideas about the conditions that led to the evolutionof protolanguage and full language. Some examine changes that occurred in the course of evolution to Homo sapiens; others consider how languages themselves have adapted by evolving to be learnable. Some chapters look at the workings of the brain, and others deploy sophisticated computer simulations that model such aspects as the emergence of speech sounds and the development of grammar. All make use of the latest methods and theories to probe into the origins and subsequent development of theonly species that has language. The book will interest a wide range of linguists, cognitive scientists, biologists, psychologists, neuroscientists, and experts in artificial intelligence, as well as all those fascinated by issues, puzzles, and problems raised by the evolution of language.

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Maggie Tallerman is Reader in Linguistics at Newcastle University. She has spent her professional life in North East England, having previously taught for 21 years at the University of Durham. Her research interests centre on the origins and evolution of syntax and morphology; modern Brythonic Celtic syntax and morphology; and language typology. She is the author of Understanding Syntax (1998; second edition 2005), and has published widely on the
morphosyntax of modern Welsh and Breton, as well as on language evolution. She was review editor for the Journal of Linguistics from 1994 to 2005.

...will interest a wide range of linguists, cognitive scientists, biologists, psychologists, neuroscientists, and experts in artificial intelligence, as well as those fascinated by issues, puzzles, and problems raised by the evolution of language.

Folia Linguistica

...obligatory reading...

Derek Bickerton, Journal of Linguistics, vol. 43

Given the range of this volume, the scope of its potential readership, and the cross-disciplinary nature of the contributions, there are significant editorial challenges to which Maggie Tallerman has risen...this is a timely volume which lives up to its aim of informing on the latest developments in what is considered to be a thriving cross-disciplinary field.

Artificial Intelligence Review

Type
BOOK
Keyword Index
Historical linguistics.|Language and languages - Origin.|Anthropological linguistics.
Country of Publication
England
Number of Pages
352

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