The First Word: The Search for the Origins of Language

The First Word: The Search for the Origins of Language

by Christine Kenneally
     
 

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An accessible exploration of a burgeoning new field: the incredible evolution of language

The first popular book to recount the exciting, very recent developments in tracing the origins of language, The First Word is at the forefront of a controversial, compelling new field. Acclaimed science writer Christine Kenneally explains how a relatively…  See more details below

Overview

An accessible exploration of a burgeoning new field: the incredible evolution of language

The first popular book to recount the exciting, very recent developments in tracing the origins of language, The First Word is at the forefront of a controversial, compelling new field. Acclaimed science writer Christine Kenneally explains how a relatively small group of scientists that include Noam Chomsky and Steven Pinker assembled the astounding narrative of how the fundamental process of evolution produced a linguistic ape?in other words, us. Infused with the wonder of discovery, this vital and engrossing book offers us all a better understanding of the story of humankind.

Editorial Reviews

The search for the origin of human language has finally come of age. In bygone days, authorities pursued "research" by imprisoning and totally isolating toddlers to discover what language they would eventually speak "naturally." For centuries, progress in Ur-language research was slow and spasmodic; many scientists came to believe that there was no definitive way to answer its central questions. Then, in the past 20 years, everything changed. Christine Kenneally's The First Word shows how linguists, cognitive scientists, animal researchers, biologists, and geneticists have all contributed valuable new insights into language evolution. The author is superbly equipped to render this story with clarity: She holds a Ph.D. in linguistics from Cambridge and has written about scientific topics for The New Yorker, Scientific American, and other publications.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781101202395
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
07/19/2007
Sold by:
Penguin Group
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
520,941
File size:
445 KB
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Christine Kenneally is Australian and received her Ph.D. in linguistics at Cambridge. She has written about language, science, and culture for publications such as The New Yorker, The New York Times, Scientific American, Discover, and Slate.

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