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LANGUAGE AS A SYMBOLIC SYSTEM FOR COMMUNICATION

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Linguistics is the study of all aspects of language: Phonetics Phonology Morphology Syntax Grammar historical linguistics The branch of linguistics that studies ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: LANGUAGE AS A SYMBOLIC SYSTEM FOR COMMUNICATION


1
LANGUAGE AS A SYMBOLIC SYSTEM FOR COMMUNICATION
genea specific sequence of nucleotides in DNA or
RNA that is located in the germ plasm usually on
a chromosome and that is the functional unit of
inheritance controlling the transmission and
expression of one or more traits by specifying
the structure of a particular polypeptide and
especially a protein or controlling the function
of other genetic material
Basic problem THE EMERGENCE OF THE SYMBOLIC
SYSTEMS FOR COMMUNICATION AND THE GENESIS OF THE
HOMO SAPIENS SAPIENS
The web version is cut and without illustrations
2
SYMBOL
Something that stands for or suggests something
else by reason of relationship, association,
convention, or accidental resemblance
e.g. The lion is a symbol of courage
3
Origin of Language One Theory
  • Early hominines, began using gestures to
    communicate intentions within a social setting.
  • When Homo erectus moved out of the tropics, they
    needed to plan and communicate to survive seasons
    of cold temperatures.
  • By the time archaic Homo sapiens appeared, finely
    controlled movements of the mouth and throat had
    given rise to spoken language.

4
  • EMERGENCE OF LANGUAGE AS A SYMBOLIC SYSTEM FOR
    COMMUNICATION
  • NO DIRECT EVIDENCE
  • INDIRECT
  • BIOLOGICAL CHANGES RELATED TO SPEECH
  • OTHER SYMBOLIC ACTIVITIES OF HUMINIDS DOCUMENTED
    . HOW DID THEY RELATE TO SPEECH?

5
OBJECTIVES 1. DEFINE THE THEORETICAL
BACKGROUND 2. CHARACTERIZE WHAT THE LANGUAGE
IS 3. DESCRIBE THE EVOLUTION OF THE HOMINIDS AS
A LONG-TERM PROCESS OF BIOLOGICAL ADAPTATION AND
REPRODUCTION OF SOCIAL BEHAVIOR AIMING NOT ONLY
SURVIVAL OF SPECIES BUT CREATING A NEW WORLD OF
CULTURE IN CONTEXT OF CLIMATIC LOCAL CHANGES AND
CHANGING ENVIRONMENT (MIGRATIONS)
6
EVOLUTION AS ADAPTATION AND CREATING A NEW WORLD
THE WORLD OF CULTURE A. ADAPTATION AS ACTIVE
INTERACTION OF THE HUMINIDS WITH THE NATURE, AND
AS INTERBREEDING BIOLOGICAL FROM
AUSTRALOPITHECUS TOWARDS HUMAN SAPIENS
SAPIENS 1. AUSTRALOPITHECINES BIPED 2. HOMO
HABILIS FIRST TOOL MAKERS 3. HOMO ERECTUS AND
NEWLY DISCOVERED PRECEDERS HANDAXE MAKERS 4.
HOMO SAPIENS THE PROBLEM WITH HOMO
NEANDERTHALENLIS 5. HOMO SAPIENS SAPIENS SOCIAL
BEHAVIOR ADAPTATION, INNERCONTACTS,
INTERBREEDING B. CLIMATE AS A LEADING FACTOR IN
THE ADAPTATION
THEORETICAL BACKGROUND
7
What Is Language?
  • A symbolic system for communication of any kind
    of information.
  • Inter-social contacts (sharing experience,
    concerns, beliefs and interests)
  • Communication between generations.
  • One one of the cultural component, without which
    the culture would not exist easily. Why?

Between generations
Time
space
Inter-social
Integrative function
8
The Biology of Human Speech
air sacs
larynx
tongue
Strikingly, the lowering of the larynx, which
permits a greater variety of articulations with
the tongue, has the consequence of making it much
easier for humans to choke.
9
Linguistic
  • Linguistics is the study of all aspects of
    language
  • Phonetics
  • Phonology
  • Morphology
  • Syntax
  • Grammar
  •   The roots of linguistics, the modern scientific
    study of language, go back a long way to the
    works of ancient grammarians in India, more than
    two thousand years ago.
  • The modern scientific study of language began in
    the 17th century with the accumulation of facts
    about the languages spoken by people encountered
    during the Age of Exploration.
  •    In the 19th century, laws and principles of
    language were formulated.
  • Many theories of language have been developed
    in the 20th century.
  • historical linguistics The branch of linguistics
    that studies the histories of and relationships
    between languages, both living and dead.
  • descriptive linguistics attempts to explain the
    features of a particular language at one time in
    its history and looks at languages as separate
    systems without considering how they might be
    related to each other.

10
Science of sounds
Phonology
Phonetics
The study of abstract rules that guide the sound
patterns of a language is called
Systemic study of the production, transmission,
and reception of speech sounds
e.g. phonetic alphabet (a way to write these
sounds down)
the patterns, the phonological theorizing
phoneme
There are often differences in the way a phoneme
is pronounced in a specific context. The variant
pronunciations are called allophones ("other
sounds")
The smallest class of sound that makes a
difference in meaning (distinctive sounds)
  • consonants p, t, k, b, d, g, c, , f, ?, s, š,
    h, v, ð, z, ž, m, n, ?, l, r, w, y
  • vowels i, u, I, U, e, o, , ?, , æ, a, ay, aw,
    oy

11
  • in the ideal case, allophone, / /
    phoneme.
  • A classic example of sound alternation in English
    relates to the s found at the beginning of a
    syllable before a voiceless stop.
  • Although a word like spin is basically pin with
    s added, the /p/ in each case is pronounced
    differently.
  • pin contains an aspirated version of /p/, with a
    puff of air after the stop is released this is
    written ph
  • spin contains a plain /p/, without a puff of air
    after the stop this is written just p
  • The same is true for pairs like pitspit,
    potspot, pairspare, etc.
  • A simple statement of this alternation is as
    follows

12
Phonetics refers to the physiological and
acoustic parts of the following diagram, while
phonology resides in the brain.
13
  • writing system A set of visible or tactile signs
    used to represent units of language in a
    systematic way.
  • alphabet A series of symbols representing the
    sounds of a language arranged in a traditional
    order.

14
  • morphemes In linguistics, the smallest units of
    sound that carry a meaning (e.g. pan, dog)
  • morphology The study of the patterns or rules of
    word formation in a language (including such
    things as rules concerning verb tense,
    pluralization, and compound words).
  • frame substitution A method used to identify the
    syntactic units of language. For example, a
    category called nouns may be established as
    anything that will fit the substitution frame I
    see a . . .

15
Signal and Symbol
Pavlovs classical study of conditioning, a dog
that salivated to the taste of meat was taught to
salivate to the sound of a bell by having the two
stimuli paired. After this training, the ringing
of a bell constituted a _______________ for the
dog because the meaning, meat, was implicit in
the immediate experience of bell ringing for the
dog it had a natural or self-evident meaning. (p.
90). a.       symbol b.       signal c.      
language d.       grammar Paralanguage
In human beings, there exists, besides the first
system of signals, a second one, language, that
increases the possibilities of conditioning. For
human beings words can function as stimuli, so
real and effective, that they can mobilize us
just like a concrete stimulus.
16
Signals and symbols
  Forms of communication. Can be
learned. Signals are in response to aspects of
the immediate environment  Symbols are
arbitrary and can be used independent of a
particular environment.
Gesture
Learned gestures different cultures assign
different meanings to are known as conventional
gestures
17
  • paralanguage The extralinguistic noises that
    accompany language, for example, those of crying
    or laughing.
  • Paralanguage includes not only the way that
    people say things but also a variety of
    extralinguistic noises called
  • vocalizations
  • voice qualities In paralanguage, the background
    characteristics of a speakers voice.

Two people say to you, You sure look nice
today. Although they are saying the same words,
you can tell that one person is being
complimentary and the other sarcastic by their
voice qualities
There are more than 7000 facial expressions
documented in the humankind
18
The Nature of Language
  • There are approximately 6,000 languages.
  • All languages are organized in the same basic
    way.
  • Spoken languages use sounds and rules for putting
    the sounds together.
  • Sign languages use gestures rather than sounds.

OOn April 10, 1984, the Northern Ute became the
first community of Native Americans in the United
States to affirm the right of its members to
regain and maintain fluency in the ancestral
language.
Among the oldest writing systems in the world is
Egyptian hieroglyphics , developed about 5,000
years ago and in use for about 3,500 years.
19
Mastering the verbal system of a foreign language
does not guarantee effective communication
because mastering the non-verbal systems of that
foreign language is also essential. These verbal
and nonverbal systems are connected, and the use
of one without the other might cause a
disequilibrium.
Kinesics (body language) A system of notating
and analyzing postures, facial expressions, and
body motions that convey messages.
20
  • proxemics The cross-cultural study of humankinds
    perception and use of space.
  • space, distance, and territory.

North Americans and Latin Americans, for example,
have fundamentally different proxemic systems.
While North Americans usually remain at a
distance from one another, Latin Americans stay
very close to each other. This simple fact can
tell much about these people's different concepts
of privacy. While most North Americans value
privacy, Latin Americans seldom consider it an
important aspect of life.
21
  • syntax In linguistics, the rules or principles of
    phrase and sentence making.
  • grammar The entire formal structure of a language
    consisting of all observations about the
    morphemes and syntax.
  • language family A group of languages descended
    from a single ancestral language.
  • linguistic divergence The development of
    different languages from a single ancestral
    language.

22
  • glottochronology In linguistics, a method for
    identifying the approximate time that languages
    branched off from a common ancestor. It is based
    on analyzing core vocabularies.

Most of the alphabets in use today descended from
the Phoenicians
Indo-European languages
23
  • core vocabularies In language, pronouns, lower
    numerals, and names for body parts and natural
    objects.
  • pidgin A language in which the syntax and
    vocabulary of two other languages are simplified
    and combined.
  • Creole A pidgin language that has become the
    mother tongue of society.
  • linguistic nationalism The attempt by ethnic
    minorities, and even countries to proclaim
    independence by purging their languages of
    foreign terms.

24
  • ethnolinguistics The study of the relation
    between language and culture.
  • linguistic relativity The proposition that
    diverse interpretations of reality embodied in
    languages yield demonstrable influences on
    thought.
  • gendered speech Distinct male and female syntax
    exhibited in various languages around the world.
  • dialects Varying forms of a language that reflect
    particular regions or social classes and that are
    similar enough to be mutually intelligible.

25
  • code switching The process of changing from one
    language or dialect to another.
  • displacement The ability to refer to things and
    events removed in time and space
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