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University of Rhode Island
APG 203
Professor Garcia- Quijano

3/24/14 Language and Communication • What is language? o Primary means of communication (spoken/ written) o Transmitted through learning as a part of enculturation  Babies try to imitate peoples words/ mouth movements o Based on arbitrary, learned associations between words and the things they represent o Allows humans to:  Conjure up elaborate images • More complex than any other animal  Discuss past and future • Only animal to discuss all tenses (past, present, and future) • Imagine different scenarios  Share experiences with others  Benefit from others experiences • Learn from others mistakes • Take advice o Anthropologists study language in its social and cultural context Non Human Communication • Call Systems o Limited number of sounds that are produced in response to specific stimuli o Automatic and cannot be combined  Does not need to be learned unlike language  Need to choose which call to use if two situations arise at the same time (ex: food or danger) o At some point in human development, ancestors began to combine calls and to understand combinations Can apes use language?
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