Biology and Philosophy 32 (6):905-933 (2017)

Nicholas Evans
Australian National University
Accounts of language evolution have largely suffered from a monolingual bias, assuming that language evolved in a single isolated community sharing most speech conventions. Rather, evidence from the small-scale societies who form the best simulacra available for ancestral human communities suggests that the combination of small societal scale and out-marriage pushed ancestral human communities to make use of multiple linguistic systems. Evolutionary innovations would have occurred in a number of separate communities, distributing the labor of structural invention between populations, and would then have been pooled gradually through multilingually mediated horizontal transfer to produce the technological package we now regard as a natural ensemble.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1007/s10539-018-9609-3
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

PhilArchive copy

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 62,496
External links

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

On the Human ‘Interactional Engine.Stephen C. Levinson - 2006 - In N. J. Enfield and S. C. Levinson , Roots Of.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Afterword: Tough Questions; Hard Problems; Incremental Progress.Kim Sterelny - 2020 - Topics in Cognitive Science 12 (2):766-783.
On Our Moral Fate.Kim Sterelny - 2021 - Jus Cogens 3 (1):51-58.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Modeling Co‐Evolution of Speech and Biology.Bart Boer - 2016 - Topics in Cognitive Science 8 (2):459-468.
Standardized Terminologies and Cultural Diversity.Paul Ghils - 1992 - Journal for General Philosophy of Science / Zeitschrift für Allgemeine Wissenschaftstheorie 23 (1):33-44.
Selectionist Approaches in Evolutionary Linguistics: An Epistemological Analysis.Nathalie Gontier - 2012 - International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 26 (1):67 - 95.
Out of the Fly-Bottle: Conceptual Confusions in Multilingual Legislation. [REVIEW]King Kui Sin - 2013 - International Journal for the Semiotics of Law - Revue Internationale de Sémiotique Juridique 26 (4):927-951.
Language, Media and Community in the Information Age.Gábor Szécsi - 2013 - Santalka: Filosofija, Komunikacija 21 (2):119-127.


Added to PP index

Total views
33 ( #327,272 of 2,446,348 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
2 ( #310,179 of 2,446,348 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes