Pub. Date:
Taylor & Francis
Language, Cognition, and the Brain: Insights From Sign Language Research / Edition 1

Language, Cognition, and the Brain: Insights From Sign Language Research / Edition 1

by Karen Emmorey
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For general readers with an interest in sign language, linguistics, cognitive, psychology, or behavioral neuroscience, Emmorey (Salk Institute for Biological Studies) summarizes new and recent research that illustrates what can be learned about human language, cognition, and the brain by studying signed languages and the Deaf people who use them. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Product Details

ISBN-13: 2900805833996
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 11/01/2001
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 408
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 1.25(h) x 9.00(d)

Table of Contents

Notation Conventionsxv
Documenting the Birth of a Language: The Nicaraguan Sign Language Project4
The American Deaf Community and Sociolinguistic Context7
Suggestions for Further Reading11
2The Structure of American Sign Language: Linguistic Universals and Modality Effects13
The Structure of Signs: Morphology and the Lexicon14
The Phonology of a Soundless Language23
Syntax: The Structure of Sentences43
Discourse and Language Use63
Conclusions and Implications69
Suggestions for Further Reading70
3The Confluence of Language and Space73
Classifier Constructions73
Talking About Space With Space91
Nonlocative Functions of Signing Space104
Suggestions for Further Reading115
4Psycholinguistic Studies of Sign Perception, Online Processing, and Production117
Sign Perception and Visual Processing117
Lexical Access and Sign Recognition125
Lexical Representations and Organization129
Online Comprehension of Signed Utterances: Psycholinguistic Studies of Coreference136
Some Issues in Sign Language Production146
Suggestions for Further Reading168
5Sign Language Acquisition169
Early Development170
What Does That "Mistake" Mean? Acquisition of Syntax and Morphology181
Later Development190
Conclusions and Implications203
Suggestions for Further Reading204
6The Critical Period Hypothesis and the Effects of Late Language Acquisition205
When Language Input Is Absent or Inconsistent: The Contribution of the Child206
The Effects of Age of Acquisition on Grammatical Knowledge and Language Processing211
Delayed First Language Acquisition Differs From Second Language Acquisition216
The Cognitive Effects of Delayed First Language Acquisition219
The Effects of Late Acquisition on the Neural Organization of Language222
Suggestions for Further Reading225
7Memory for Sign Language: Implications for the Structure of Working Memory227
Early Evidence for Sign-Based Working Memory228
Evidence for a Visuospatial Phonological Loop230
Working Memory Capacity: Effects on Memory Span for Sign and Speech233
Effects of the Visuospatial Modality on Sign-Based Working Memory234
A Modality Effect for Sign Language? Implications for Models of Working Memory238
The Architecture of Working Memory for Sign Language: Summary and Conclusions240
Suggestions for Further Reading241
8The Impact of Sign Language Use on Visuospatial Cognition243
Motion Processing244
Face Processing251
Mental Imagery258
Domains Unaffected by Sign Language Use267
Implications: Does Language Affect Cognition?268
Suggestions for Further Reading270
9Sign Language and the Brain271
What Determines the Left-Hemispheric Specialization for Language?271
Within Hemisphere Organization of Sign Language286
The Role of the Right Hemisphere in Language Processes296
The Role of Subcortical Structures in Sign Language309
Conclusions and Implications312
Suggestions for Further Reading314
Appendix AHandshapes in American Sign Language319
Appendix BLinguistic Distinctions Among Communication Forms in Nicaragua321
Author Index363
Subject Index375

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