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Anthropology Notes Ch.3 Ember-Ember

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Department
Anthropology
Course
ANTH 205
Professor
Brittany Staff
Semester
Spring

Description
Origins of Language: Children’s Acquisition of Language • Children learn language by repeating adults (sounds/words that they hear),  becoming more complex with age (the “black box” of language) o Some argue for the innate grammar • Adults have a much more difficult time learning a second language, and even  store that language in a different part of the brain. o Polyglot: someone who speaks multiple languages Descriptive Linguistics • Phonology: rules or principles that predict how sounds are made and how they are  used • Phoneme: a sound or set of sounds that makes a difference in meaning to the  speakers of the language • Phone: a speech sound in a language • Morphology: how sound sequences (and sometimes even individual sounds)  convey meaning and how meaningful sound sequences are strung together to form  words (this has other applied meanings aside from just language) • Morpheme: one or more morphs with the same meaning • Morph: the smallest unit of language that has a meaning • Syntax: how words are strung together to form phrases and sentences • Historical Linguistics: how language changes over time Language Families and Culture History: • Protolanguage: a hypothesized ancestral language from which two or more  languages seem to have derived (Latin as the ancestor to the Romance Languages) • Language family: the languages that derive from the same protolanguage  (romance languages: French, Spanish) Process of Linguistic Divergence • Dialect: variety of language spoken in a particular area or by a particular social  group o There can even be stereotype
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