Language and Species
by Derek Bickerton
University of Chicago Press, 1990
eISBN: 978-0-226-22094-9 | Cloth: 978-0-226-04610-5 | Paper: 978-0-226-04611-2
Library of Congress Classification P116.B52 1990
Dewey Decimal Classification 401

ABOUT THIS BOOK | AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY | TOC
ABOUT THIS BOOK
Language and Species presents the most detailed and well-documented scenario to date of the origins of language. Drawing on "living linguistic fossils" such as "ape talk," the "two-word" stage of small children, and pidgin languages, and on recent discoveries in paleoanthropology, Bickerton shows how a primitive "protolanguage" could have offered Homo erectus a novel ecological niche. He goes on to demonstrate how this protolanguage could have developed into the languages we speak today.

"You are drawn into [Bickerton's] appreciation of the dominant role language plays not only in what we say, but in what we think and, therefore, what we are."—Robert Wright, New York Times Book Review

"The evolution of language is a fascinating topic, and Bickerton's Language and Species is the best introduction we have."—John C. Marshall, Nature

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