Study of languages:
Study of languages was an important reason for developing various theories about human nature.
So specialists in philosophy, psychology, neurology and humanities presented theories about the nature of language and how it works,
And we mean great scholars such as Aristotle, Plato, Hume, Locke, Freud and Skinner.
If you want to formulate a theory about what humans are and how they work, then you have to explain language.
We want to make a point before going into details, when we talk about language, we mean communication systems such as English, Dutch and Italian.
You can also use the term “language” to describe what dogs, chimpanzees, or birds use to communicate with each other, as well as to describe music or any other communication system.
There is no rule on how to use the term “language”, but the problem is that using the term language so extensively that we are unable to make effective generalizations or make a good study on the subject.
Scientific concept of language:
In this article, we will discuss the scientific concept of language, and we will initially limit our conversation to communication systems such as Dutch, English and American Sign Language.
We put generalizations about the language within a narrow field, which will enable us to ask about the extent to which other systems such as animal communication systems are related to this definition.
What characteristics they have Languages in general, in a broader sense, we can ask about other communication systems that possess the same characteristics.
Important facts about language:
There are two very important facts about language.
1.First fact about language:
The first fact is the participation of all languages in some deep and complex assumptions, especially the ability of all languages to convey abstract ideas, that is, they speak of ideas and spatial relationships between things.
2.Second fact about language:
The second fact is how languages differ, if you know one language it does not necessarily mean that you know another.
The problem is not only the loss of the ability to understand, and it seems strange and unusual in the case of sign language, which means that any theory must give way to all the common characteristics and differences between languages, and this matter is a mystery to psychology and cognitive linguistics.
Darwin claimed that there was an innate tendency to speak, like babbling to children, whereas a child had no tendency to write, for example.
Darwin’s claim is controversial because it assumes some kind of innate tendency, ability, or instinct.
Darwin suggested that language is innate. What is the evidence on that? Some facts support Darwin’s hypothesis.
Every human society has a language, and while you travel you encounter different cultures, but it is proven that everyone has a language, it may be an intuitive cultural consequence.
For example, almost all cultures use tools for eating such as a knife, fork, chopsticks, etc., not because their use is a human nature, but because it is a useful thing discovered by cultures,
This may not be true, among the reasons for this assumption are proven case studies, as the language arises within one generation, Case studies have been conducted throughout history.
The standard example of this is the slave trade, as the merchants deliberately mixes slaves from different cultural backgrounds to avoid rebellion,
Which leads to slaves developing a temporary communication system so that they can speak among themselves, and this is called “simplified language.”
This simplified language was not a true language, but rather a series of randomly grouped words from different languages.
The question here is:
What will happen to children raised in such an environment? They will not speak a simple language, but rather will develop their own language within one generation, a language rich in compositions, morphology and phonology.
This language is called “Creole,” and the languages we know today are a type of Creole.
The term refers to history, that is, it is a language that has developed from a simple language, which in turn confirms that a language has an innate nature that does not require a broad cultural history.
Any normal human being has a language, provided they share it with someone else for it to develop.
Assuming that language is part of human nature supported by neurological studies talking about parts of the brain responsible for language, damage to these parts causes language deficits or aphasia, as the ability to understand or form speech is lost.
Studies on genetic basis of language:
There are some studies on the genetic basis of language, and one of the evidence for the role of these genes is the presence of point mutations in these genes in some people, making them unable to use the language.
Creativity is an inherent quality in all languages, which means two things.
The first thing was confirmed by Descartes when he discussed the idea that we are not just machines, and the best evidence he presented is our free, unlimited linguistic capacity.
We can create and understand sentences that we have not heard before. If you want to estimate the number of sentences that can be formulated from twenty words, the answer will be:
“Too many sentences.” You learned what your words mean with abstract, unconscious grammar that helps you make sense of phrases you’ve never heard before.
Second, all languages have a phonology and a word system, in addition to the basic units of meaning that refer to the rules and principles that bring together meaningful words.
As for phonology, there are no pauses between words, but your brain puts it right because you know where the word begins and where it ends.
Babies language :
Babies come into this world without knowing any specific language, so they have to learn pauses, interpret sounds in context, sometimes make mistakes, and have trouble segmenting.
Phonological understanding illustrates all aspects of language processing. If something is not clear, you will fill in the blanks for understanding speech.
The average speaker knows more than 60,000 words. Children learn on average 9 words daily, and the percentage increases or decreases according to age. Multilingual people have about 200-300,000 words.
Syntax refers to the rules:
Syntax refers to the rules that allow us to combine words into phrases and sentences, so an infinite number of sentences can be produced with a limited number of words.
Some basic facts about language development:
Usually all children learn language, but a person may lose language due to a certain brain disorder resulting from aphasia, a blow to the head, or a stroke, in addition to genetic disorders in which children lose the ability to learn to speak.
What do you know about the time course of a language? Babies tend to hear the tunes of their own language.
A study was conducted of 4-day-old French children using the sucking method.The children absorbed the divine when hearing French, and they preferred to hear French over Russian.
The researchers suggested that this was a result of hearing French in the first four days of their lives.
The reviewers objected and said:
“Maybe because French is better, everyone loves French.” The experience was repeated in Russia, and the children preferred to hear Russian over French.
Children do not listen to the words, they do not know the words or the syntax, but rather the rhythm of the language.
Even if you do not know anything about French and Russian, the two languages are different from your point of view, the same is true for children.
A child raised in France or Russia knows enough to recognize his language.
In the beginning, babies are sensitive to all sounds, you were a multilingual child, but your range of sensitivity narrows later,
To become sensitive to the language you hear only, it happens at the age of 12 months, children at this age approximately start using their first words, these words that describe things and actions Like a dog, up, and milk, then they show some sensitivity to word order, so they distinguish between “cat dog bitten” and “cat dog bite”.
Word learning :
Word learning accelerates at the age of 18 months, in addition to the ability to build small sentences such as: “I want a biscuit” or “I spilled milk.”
Ability to learn:
The ability to learn the language begins to diminish at the age of about seven years old, Elisa New York and Sam Subala.
Conducted a study on people residing in the United States for 30-40 years and monitored their ability to learn the language, and it became clear that the main determinant of the quality of their English language is not intelligence or motivation, but Old age.
It turns out that if you learn the language in your early years, you will speak like everyone else, but then the situation begins to deteriorate, and as soon as you reach puberty, there will be a big difference in your ability to learn languages, and you will often preserve your native accent.
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