Robert Wright, New York Times Book Review “The evolution of language is a fascinating topic, and Bickerton’s Language and Species is the best introduction . Request PDF on ResearchGate | Language and Species | The abstract for this Article in Language 68(2) · June with 77 Reads Derek Bickerton. Derek Bickerton (March 25, – March 5, ) was an English-born American linguist and academic who was Professor Emeritus at the University of Hawaii in Manoa. Based on his work in creole languages in Guyana and Hawaii, he has In Language and Species (), he suggests that all three questions might be.

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Skip to content Derek Bickerton b. He cites the fact that around two million years ago our ancestors were finding their way to the top of a scavenging pyramid, accessing the carcasses of megafauna before other predators and holding them off by working in coordinated groups. There is no word for cow-grazing, but we would expect there to be if language exactly mirrored reality.

To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: In Bickerton’s view, these words allowed the formation of concepts rather than mere categories that animals are also capable of. Am I the whole body or just mind or a homunculus?

Language and Species

Tools and language are unlikely to have co-evolved. Vervets probably fall somewhere in between and can equate the smell, sound and sight of a leopard with the same thing. These roles are not given by nature but are high-level abstractions. But when humans developed language, we got a secondary representational system.


The NSF deemed the proposed experiment unethical and refused to fund it. Cases for an intermediate language are not plausible because the intermediate would be as complex as the full-blown language. Units relating to entities are insufficient to describe the world, because pretty well everything we see is doing something; for example walking, running, swimming, flying, etc.

Language as Representation The Atlas. Paul Vittay rated it really liked it Mar 27, By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Chapter 7 From Protolanguage to Language Proto-language can lajguage to true language without an intermediate.

Language & Species (), by Derek Bickerton – The Knowledge Emporium

A quality on a side branch can only be predicated of a class on the branch below it. On this picture, all human inc. Language and Species presents the most detailed and well-documented scenario to date of the origins of language.

A quality at the top of the tree can be predicated of any class below it, but of no class above it. Original vocabulary was probably small — phonology may have developed in conjunction with syntax.

Modern human behaviour whenever this did emerge was probably linked to emergence of true language.

Pidgins develop into creoles — i. A pre-phonological stage may exist in pre-syntactic children.

We still receive all our primary information through our senses, but the SRS allowed us to make representations about the things we sensed. However changes to the vocal tract would have been favoured after proto-language developed. Similarly, if you touch something hot you move your hand away without thinking too hard.


Derek Bickerton – Wikipedia

Nouns do not correspond to real objects, only representations of them. Chapter 3 Language as Representation: Brandon rated it really liked it Jan 06, It therefore seems likely that H. Bert agent gave five pounds Patient to Fred Goal. This is known as the Continuity Paradox.

We can only perceive a leopard when one is actually present, but we can think about leopards in their absence. Frogs react quickly to snap up passing insects, but this is simply a hard-wired reaction to small rapidly moving objects it ignores stationary insects and reacts to pellets flicked across their line of vision, but it works more often than not.

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