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Deaf people who were born deaf and were raised by ditto parents have a significant, if not unsurmountable, advantage over people who later on in life got deaf.
I don't believe the brain is hardwired to understand language per se.....more that language fits the type of sensory input that the brain and nervous system responds to. The nervous system is fundamentally a transducer which takes various environmental signals/stimuli and turns them into electricity/neurochemicals and then creates a pathway or a snapshot of what was happening. The key to learning is repetition because when you hear the same thing again and again that same pathway/snapshot is reactivated and strengthened (Hebbian learning). And what do most Western adults spontaneously do when faced with a baby? They start making repetitive noises which are actually bits of words - da-da-da-da etc. The underlying rhythms and tones of languages are what the nervous system responds to and strives to repeat and we have specialised in it because we have been doing it for so long. We culturally calibrate our infants nervous systems to speak the language we speak. But I don't think we should be fooled into thinking language is innate just because it is our species specialisation-we wouldn't consider music to be an innate function of the brain even though other species enjoy and make it - although not quite to the same extent as us. But music is really just another type of "language" that fits in with the way our nervous system works.
If I read all things right the "qualia' of colour/color is one that is shared by both nature and culture.
Can it not be that perhaps the only language there is, innate to humans, is the language we understand and filter from the language a deaf mute person throws on us and we really understand? Is it not a matter of 2 systems in our brains: 1 lymbic system and 1 neocortex?
Isn't it the neocortex that enables us to differentiate ourselves from other mammals by means of "culture and speech"?
We all know a parrot can copycat. As goes maybe even further for the "Lyre Bird".Despite those 2 nonsense creatures aforementioned. What about dolphins?A flock of geese may not have the syntax to put warning signals across but it definitely has an alarm that let others know that a bird of prey is out there somewhere. Sorta like the human equivalent of "watch out" or maybe even deeper like "Ouch!!" Why do not animals say "ouch!!"? This is, humans are animals too.
Can it not be that maybe the human language is both cultural and nature?There are genes and memes recognized as the only 2 replicators in life. And some say "fire", but I do not see how.A feril child: does it learn and copy the language of the creatures it was raised by?A child raised without any living creature, but instead merely with a pacifier milk bottle. Will it be able to grasp the language it is initially confronted with?
Deaf people who were born deaf and were raised by ditto parents...
...have a significant, if not unsurmountable, advantage over people who later on in life got deaf. Does not the sheer fact that learning whatever study in life gets tougher when you age prove that it is both a nature and both a culture thing? At the age of 3 to 16 (or whatever) you can learn 20 languages from birth. But once you get beyond 17 you start to see a significant decline in ability to comprehend "stuff".
And unlike american legislature, we, scientists, realize that the human brains are mature only when hitting the 27th birthday. Though I am not sure about females...they tend to age way sooner. But that is probably reproductive speaking. I do not mean this derogatory but in the vain of evolution.Should not a young female be prepared and more adult than the young childish adolescent raping her?This is exactly what is still happening today, but less drawn into a caricature.
Eugentics is over, as goes for Lamarckian days....but how can we still not know the reason why certain people deem light green the same as light blue? And Homer, c.q. one of the writers, describes the sea as black as wine and the sky metallica instead of blue.
I am afraid, extrapolating on this, that eastern culture is really thinking anti-western for a purpose.And in that regard you can not blame them unless you blame yourself. If we can not even settle on colour, I believe that what they say about oriental minds being different from western may be more true than I ever imagined it to be. I mean: colour is merely one thing in a human mind, let alone hatred.
It's hard for me to believe the brain is just neurological real estate up for grabs depending on the repeated sensory input it receives, especially when very specific language functions are controlled by specific areas in the brain, like Broca's and Wernicke's areas. In addition, language development in babies follows typical patterns, despite culture or upbringing. Pathology is not a perfect indicator of how things work normally, but it can be a window into what happens when some part of the brain doesn't do what it's supposed to. Some stroke victims lose the ability to form meaningful sentences, but can still understand whats being said, and sometimes the opposite is true, which is even weirder. I've even read about stroke victims who can write, but not read or understand what they've written.
Quote from: cheryl j on 10/02/2013 21:15:16It's hard for me to believe the brain is just neurological real estate up for grabs depending on the repeated sensory input it receives, especially when very specific language functions are controlled by specific areas in the brain, like Broca's and Wernicke's areas. In addition, language development in babies follows typical patterns, despite culture or upbringing. Pathology is not a perfect indicator of how things work normally, but it can be a window into what happens when some part of the brain doesn't do what it's supposed to. Some stroke victims lose the ability to form meaningful sentences, but can still understand whats being said, and sometimes the opposite is true, which is even weirder. I've even read about stroke victims who can write, but not read or understand what they've written.I guess that depends which perspective you take. You can say that language is controlled by specific areas or you can say specific areas produce this kind of behaviour. What you will find with the language loop (which includes Broca and Wernickes areas) is that it also functions in exactly the same way for deaf people who use sign language so it is more correctly associated with the production of communication rather than speech/language per se. (See hear - http://thebrain.mcgill.ca/flash/d/d_10/d_10_cr/d_10_cr_lan/d_10_cr_lan.html).Language development like all child development improves as the nervous system is fine tuned and calibrated by its environment but it cant outpace its own physical development. It would be odd if the physical brain did not develop at roughly the same pace across the entire species (although obviously some develop quicker than others) but if your brain is not developed enough to co-ordinate the fine motor movements needed by the mouth and tongue to produce speech you wont be able to reproduce what you hear around you (thats also why dogs wont ever speak because they cant do it mechanically not because their brains arent equipped). That doesnt mean that infants dont understand (at least conceptually if not literally) what is being said. Language learning is a process of repetition and intonation that increases with age and experience but also requires the physical constructs to be in place to be able to make complicated sounds.