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Chapter 5. Language. Chapter Questions. How does human language differ from forms of communication in other animals? How do children acquire language? What are some characteristics of human languages, and how are languages structured?

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Chapter 5 l.jpg

Chapter 5

Language


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Chapter Questions

  • How does human language differ from forms of communication in other animals?

  • How do children acquire language?

  • What are some characteristics of human languages, and how are languages structured?

  • What are the relationships between language, thought, and culture?

  • How do people communicate without using words?

  • How do languages change?


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What We Will Learn

  • Origin of Human Language

  • Characteristics of Language

  • Acquiring Language

  • Language and Culture

  • Nonverbal Communication

  • Language Change


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Origin of Human Language

  • No language = no culture.

    • Emergence of language?

  • Recreates complex thoughts and experiences in words.

  • Distinct from any other animal communication system.

    • C. Hockett- 2 steps

      • Blending

      • Duality of Patterning




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    Characteristics of a Language

    • Conventionality

      • meaning sequence of sounds & object, action or idea.

    • Productive

      • new combination of sounds & words, openness, flexibility.

      • vocabulary that can expand with cultural changes.

    • Displacement

      • Abstract thought use.


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    Acquiring Language

    • Biological capability of language acquisition

    • Innate language?

      • Victor

      • Genie

    • Human vs. Ape language capacity

    • Universal Grammar


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    Universal Grammar

    • Basic principles, conditions, and rules underlie all languages.

    • Children apply unconscious universal grammar to the sounds they hear.

    • All languages share fundamental similarities.


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    The Structure of Language

    • Phonology

      • Phonemes

    • Morphology

      • Morphemes

    • Syntax

    • Semantics

      • lexicon


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    Language & Culture

    Sapir–Whorf Hypothesis

    • Language influences perception.

    • Language establishes mental categories that affect the ways people conceptualize the real world.

      Sociolinguistics

      Languages & Dialects

    • AAVE &BEV

    • Code Switching


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    Historical linguistics

    • Focused on discovering the history of languages.

    • Vocabularies are constantly changing.

    • Sociolinguists are interested in the social factors that affect changes in languages.


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    Nonverbal Communication

    • Most messages are sent and received without words:

      • Facial expressions

      • Gestures

      • Eye contact

      • Touching

      • Posture


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    Non-verbal Communication

    • Haptics

    • Chronemics

      • Monochronic Time

      • Polychronic Time

    • Proxemics

    • Kinesics


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    Nonverbal communication

    • Almost 2/3s of communication.

    • Messages sent by clothing, jewelry, tattoos, piercings, and body modifications.


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