David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Ezio Di Nucci
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
In David Papineau & Graham MacDonald (eds.), Teleosemantics: New Philosophical Essays. OUP 23 (2004)
Language is at the core of the cognitive revolution that has transformed that discipline over the last forty years or so, and it is also the central paradigm for the most prominent attempt to synthesise psychology and evolutionary theory. A single and distinctively modular view of language has emerged out of both these perspectives, one that encourages a certain idealisation. Linguistic competence is uniform, independent of other cognitive capacities, and with a developmental trajectory that is largely independent of environmental input (Pinker 1994; Pinker 1997). Thus language is seen as a paradigm of John Tooby and Leda Cosmides’ concept of “evoked culture”: linguistic experience serves only to select a specific item from a menu of innately available options (Tooby and Cosmides 1992). In explaining this concept, they appeal to the metaphor of a jukebox. The human genome pre-stores a set of options, and the different experiences provided by different cultures select different elements out of this option set. I think an appropriate evolutionary perspective on language substantially undercuts this idealisation and the evoked culture model of language. Variability between speakers; the sensitivity of linguistic development to environmental input; and the limits of encapsulation are not noise. They are central to the language and its evolution
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Steven Pinker (2005). The Nature of the Language Faculty and its Implications for Evolution of Language (Reply to Fitch, Hauser, and Chomsky). Cognition 97 (2):211-225.
Jesse J. Prinz (2006). Is the Mind Really Modular? In Robert J. Stainton (ed.), Contemporary Debates in Cognitive Science. Blackwell 22--36.
Thomas E. Dickins & David W. Dickins (2001). Symbols, Stimulus Equivalence and the Origins of Language. Behavior and Philosophy 29:221 - 244.
Lawrence A. Shapiro & William M. Epstein (1998). Evolutionary Theory Meets Cognitive Psychology: A More Selective Perspective. Mind and Language 13 (2):171-94.
Robert C. Richardson (1996). The Prospects for an Evolutionary Psychology: Human Language and Human Reasoning. [REVIEW] Minds and Machines 6 (4):541-557.
Johan De Smedt (2009). Cognitive Modularity in the Light of the Language Faculty. Logique Et Analyse 208:373-387.
Willem Zuidema & Bart de Boer (2003). How Did We Get From There to Here in the Evolution of Language? Behavioral and Brain Sciences 26 (6):694-695.
Barry C. Smith (2006). What I Know When I Know a Language. In Ernest Lepore & Barry C. Smith (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Language. Oxford University Press
Nick Chater & Morten H. Christiansen (2010). Language Acquisition Meets Language Evolution. Cognitive Science 34 (7):1131-1157.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads78 ( #56,102 of 1,911,323 )
Recent downloads (6 months)7 ( #96,047 of 1,911,323 )
How can I increase my downloads?