Does Universal Grammar Theory Imply that Language Are All the Same?—Re...

Nov 29, 2015 by

In the previous post, I began laying out a response to Vyvyan Evans’ article in Aeon and more generally in his book, The Language Myth: Why Language Is Not an Instinct. That earlier post focuses on whether language is in instinct. In...

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What Is Linguistic Complexity and How to Measure It?

Nov 19, 2015 by

[Note to Readers: the following is my translation from Russian of Alexander Piperski’s lecture posted on PostNauka.ru, posted here with his permission.]   We all have some ideas about what languages ​​are simpler and,...

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Is “Huh?” a Universal Word?—And Why Is It Important?

Sep 2, 2015 by

[This post was originally published in November 2013] Last week I was contacted by the producers of the AirTalk radio based in Los Angeles and asked to discuss the article on the universality of “Huh?” recently published by Mark...

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Are We “At the Origin of Language Structure”?—Another Blooper-Riddled ...

Aug 31, 2015 by

[Thanks to George Walkden for drawing my attention to the article discussed below and for a helpful discussion of some of its shortcomings.]   A recent article in Science Daily describes the research conducted by “a team from...

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Sounds and Sound Systems Around the World: An Brief Overview

Apr 7, 2015 by

Human languages use great many different speech sounds, but no single language uses them all. To hear various speech sounds and to see International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) symbols that represent them, visit here. Each language...

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Just How Weird Are the World’s Weirdest—and least Weird—Languages?...

Oct 26, 2014 by

[This post was originally published in September 2013] In a recent post on idibon.com Tyler Schnoebelen asked which language is the “weirdest of all”. The most intuitive definition of the concept of language weirdness involves...

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