Language 10 - Our use of language is a behavior that is...

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Our use of language is a behavior that is highly organized patterns of motor activity. Communication is the most important social behavior. Language evolved through social contact among our early ancestors. Speaking and writing are social behaviors. We learn these skills from other people and use them to communicate with them. We use language in our own remembering and thinking. Language enables us to think about very complex and abstract issues by encoding them in words and manipulating the words according to logical rules. Psycholinguistics is a branch of psychology devoted to the study of verbal behavior and is concerned with human cognition than with the particular rules that describe language. The auditory system performs a formidably complex task in enabling us to recognize speech sounds. Human vocalizations are clearly distinguished from other sounds around us. We can filter out non speech sounds, such as coughs or chuckles within an individual’s vocalization. The auditory system recognizes the patterns underlying speech rather than jus the sounds themselves. Some regions of the brain responded more when people heard human vocalizations (both speech and nonspeech) than when they heard only natural sounds- temporal lobe, on the auditory cortex . When it comes to analyzing the detailed information of speech, the left hemisphere has a greater role. The analysis of speech begins with its elements, or phonemes . Phonemes are the elements of speech- the smallest unit of sound that contribute to the meaning of a spoken word. Voice-onset-time is the delay between the initial sound of a consonant and the onset of vibration of the vocal cords. Voicing is the vibration of your vocal cords. The distinction between voiced and unvoiced consonants permits us to distinguish between p and b. Phonemic discriminations begin with auditory processing of the sensory differences occurring at both hemispheres. Regions of the left auditory cortex specialize in recognizing the special aspects of speech. Perception of a phoneme is affected by the sounds that follow it. We recognize speech sounds in pieces larger than individual phonemes. We are able to recognize sounds because of the context. Context affects perception of words through top-down processing. All languages have a syntax or grammer. They all follow certain principles which linguists call syntactical rules for combining words to form phrases, clauses, or sentences. Our understanding of syntax is automatic. The syntactical rules are learned implicitly. Syntactical rules are signaled by word order, word class, function words, affixes, word meanings, and prosody. - word order tells us who does what to whom - word class refers to the grammatical categories that we learn in school.
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-Words can be classified as function words or content words. Function words include determiners, quantifiers, prepositions, and words in similar categories. Content words include nouns, verbs, and most adjectives and adverbs. Content words express meaning; function words express the relation between content words.
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  • Fall '09
  • joorden
  • brain damage, Parietal lobe

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