PS101, Lec 17: 03/28/2013
Is language uniquely human?
Karl von Frisch – the waggle dance of bees
Nonhuman primates and ASL
The African Grey Parrot, Alex he seemed to know a lot of words and sounds. Proved that animals
are capable or learning a large set of vocabulary.
Semantics has been widely debated
Syntax has been widely agreed
Khamsey argues that you’re born with the genes for language.
Greenspan says it’s because of the way you grew up.
Eli and Gleason from BU say that the emotional content paired with words is what makes humans
learn language in a sophisticated way.
Schema: find a pattern and stick with it. Assimilating new information and accommodating it until they
learn by trial and error. Ex. Children add an ed to the end of every verb