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Evolution of language

janesix
Posts: 3,460
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5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM
Posted: 7 months ago
Noam Chomsky believes language evolved in a saltational event 50 to 75 thousand years ago. Most scientists in the field believe language evolved much more gradually.

https://www.youtube.com...

What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?
user13579
Posts: 822
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5/3/2016 9:49:39 PM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
Noam Chomsky believes language evolved in a saltational event 50 to 75 thousand years ago. Most scientists in the field believe language evolved much more gradually.

https://www.youtube.com...

What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?

I don't believe in the Tower of Babel story.
Science in a nutshell:
"Facts are neither true nor false. They simply are."
"All scientific knowledge is provisional. Even facts are provisional."
"We can be absolutely certain that we have a moon, we can be absolutely certain that water is made out of H2O, and we can be absolutely certain that the Earth is a sphere!"
"Scientific knowledge is a body of statements of varying degrees of certainty -- some most unsure, some nearly sure, none absolutely certain."
janesix
Posts: 3,460
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5/3/2016 9:50:48 PM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/3/2016 9:49:39 PM, user13579 wrote:
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
Noam Chomsky believes language evolved in a saltational event 50 to 75 thousand years ago. Most scientists in the field believe language evolved much more gradually.

https://www.youtube.com...

What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?

I don't believe in the Tower of Babel story.

I don't either, but what does that have to do with the topic?
RuvDraba
Posts: 6,033
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5/3/2016 11:48:01 PM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?
Great question, Jane.

I'm for gradual evolution. We can see forms of language in other mammals, and some (like chimps) are capable of learning new language.
janesix
Posts: 3,460
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5/4/2016 12:37:01 AM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/3/2016 11:48:01 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?
Great question, Jane.

I'm for gradual evolution. We can see forms of language in other mammals, and some (like chimps) are capable of learning new language.
I agree it was probably gradual. Even birds have a rudimentary form of language.
Riwaaz_Ras
Posts: 1,046
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5/4/2016 2:58:21 AM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/3/2016 11:48:01 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?
Great question, Jane.

I'm for gradual evolution. We can see forms of language in other mammals, and some (like chimps) are capable of learning new language.

Now, do you see what's wrong?
(This is not a goodbye message. I may or may not come back after ten years.)
TBR
Posts: 9,991
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5/4/2016 3:10:36 AM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/4/2016 2:58:21 AM, Riwaaz_Ras wrote:
At 5/3/2016 11:48:01 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?
Great question, Jane.

I'm for gradual evolution. We can see forms of language in other mammals, and some (like chimps) are capable of learning new language.

Now, do you see what's wrong?

What exactly is "wrong"?
RuvDraba
Posts: 6,033
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5/4/2016 6:30:31 AM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/4/2016 2:58:21 AM, Riwaaz_Ras wrote:
At 5/3/2016 11:48:01 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?
Great question, Jane.

I'm for gradual evolution. We can see forms of language in other mammals, and some (like chimps) are capable of learning new language.

Now, do you see what's wrong?
Yes -- you patronise, bait lectures, push barrows, and run off topic at the drop of a hat.

On the other hand, if you're asking whether I see something wrong with what you underlined, I'm afraid not. :(
Peternosaint
Posts: 1,166
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5/4/2016 7:06:57 AM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
Noam Chomsky believes language evolved in a saltational event 50 to 75 thousand years ago. Most scientists in the field believe language evolved much more gradually.

https://www.youtube.com...

What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?

ME: Language, in particular Hebrew, a perfect language arrived with Adam and Eve. About 6000 years ago. Writing in both hieroglyphics and language arrived some time later. c 5000 years.
keithprosser
Posts: 1,975
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5/4/2016 7:31:43 AM
Posted: 7 months ago
What is the dividing line between a 'basic/rudimentary method of communication' and a 'language'? Human languages are - for the sake of argument - vastly more expressive and complex than non-human-animal (NHA) means of communication and that expressiveness and complexity almost certainly developed very rapidly (as evolution defines rapid) so if 'language' means human-level communication then it could be said to be a saltation.

But if we lower the bar for what counts as a language to include more primitive forms of communication then it would be fair to say language developed gradually. So I repeat my first sentence: What is the dividing line between a 'basic/rudimentary method of communication' and a 'language'?
Riwaaz_Ras
Posts: 1,046
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5/4/2016 5:34:11 PM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/4/2016 3:10:36 AM, TBR wrote:
At 5/4/2016 2:58:21 AM, Riwaaz_Ras wrote:
At 5/3/2016 11:48:01 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?
Great question, Jane.

I'm for gradual evolution. We can see forms of language in other mammals, and some (like chimps) are capable of learning new language.

Now, do you see what's wrong?

What exactly is "wrong"?

Learning a new language is quite different from making a new language through some sort of evolution. (duh)
(This is not a goodbye message. I may or may not come back after ten years.)
TBR
Posts: 9,991
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5/4/2016 5:42:00 PM
Posted: 7 months ago
At 5/4/2016 5:34:11 PM, Riwaaz_Ras wrote:
At 5/4/2016 3:10:36 AM, TBR wrote:
At 5/4/2016 2:58:21 AM, Riwaaz_Ras wrote:
At 5/3/2016 11:48:01 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 5/3/2016 9:44:27 PM, janesix wrote:
What seems more reasonable? A saltation event, or gradual evolution?
Great question, Jane.

I'm for gradual evolution. We can see forms of language in other mammals, and some (like chimps) are capable of learning new language.

Now, do you see what's wrong?

What exactly is "wrong"?

Learning a new language is quite different from making a new language through some sort of evolution. (duh)

The point was, he thinks language is gradual. I don't see what is a big deal. The addition of "learning language" speaks to the ability.

Regardless, I will let the poster speak for himself.