The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language | Study Guide

Steven Pinker

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Course Hero. "The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language Study Guide." Course Hero. 1 May 2020. Web. 21 June 2021. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Language-Instinct-How-the-Mind-Creates-Language/>.

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Course Hero, "The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language Study Guide," May 1, 2020, accessed June 21, 2021, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/The-Language-Instinct-How-the-Mind-Creates-Language/.

The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language | Chapter Summaries

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Chapter Summaries Chart

Chapter Summary
Preface Pinker writes to satisfy the common curiosity people have about language. He will discuss how language is learned, why l... Read More
Chapter 1 Humans have the unique ability to influence one another's thoughts. This ability is accomplished primarily through langu... Read More
Chapter 2 All humans have language; no "mute tribe" has been found. All language is complex, which lends support to the n... Read More
Chapter 3 Thought is not dependent on language, nor does it determine language. The mind utilizes a specialized language ... Read More
Chapter 4 Language operates according to two principles: (1) "the arbitrariness of sign," that is, words are arbitrarily assigned ... Read More
Chapter 5 The brain is not merely a storehouse for words. Morphology, a rule-based system for word formation and use, governs word... Read More
Chapter 6 The human body is predisposed to communicate through speech. Although humans are innately predisposed to perceive langua... Read More
Chapter 7 The human brain comprehends speech not only effectively but also efficiently. Comprehension of sentences begins... Read More
Chapter 8 Noam Chomsky noted that the world's languages share many commonalities and vary in somewhat predictable ways, which sugg... Read More
Chapter 9 Research shows infants have language abilities, perhaps even before birth, which suggests some aspects of language are n... Read More
Chapter 10 A defective gene can disrupt grammar as demonstrated by studies of families with Specific Language Impairment (SLI), tho... Read More
Chapter 11 Although both Pinker and Noam Chomsky agree on the presence of an innate language instinct, Pinker believes it has occur... Read More
Chapter 12 Prescriptive grammar is the "prescription" for how people should talk according to societal rules. Speaking acc... Read More
Chapter 13 The notion of language as instinct challenges the belief that there is no universal human nature. The Standard ... Read More
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