Re: [xmca] FW: Language and Culture

From: David Preiss <davidpreiss who-is-at>
Date: Mon Apr 16 2007 - 19:20:30 PDT

Hi Peter et al,
How great you and Mike fwed this. I read the article and it is amazing. There
are three parts I loved the most: first, the depiction of the intellectual and
personal biography of Everett. What an unusual and carismatic chracter. He is
an outsider enough to challenge the givens of American cog sci an has the
training needed to do so. Everett stroke me as a new romantic in an unromantic
science. And, second, I loved the way the journalist depicted the researcher
that came "down there" to test Chomsky´s hypotheses and how evident was the
whole experimental procedure was so alien to the culture that was of no use
there. Last but not least, I loved the comeback of Sapir and how fitting was
Everett depictions of the Piraha to the thinking of contemporary cultural
psychologists such as Tomasello and Mike himself. There are many issues there
that can be nicely framed in a CHAT perspective-
Thanks to the New Yorker for being there for al of us!

Peter Smagorinsky escribió:
> a colleague reports:
> Dear Colleagues,
> I recommend to you a recent article in The New Yorker about peoples living
> in the Amazon whose language seems to defy Chomsky's ideas that all
> languages follow certain structural features (universal grammar). A
> linguist Dan Everett who has lived with the Piraha off and on for many years
> writes that their language which is described as sounding like "a profusion
> of exotic birds, a melodic chattering scarcely discernible, to the
> uninitiated, as human speech" does not follow Chomsky's universal grammar.
> The article is very engaging and might be useful in stimulating student
> discussion of the relationship between language and culture.
> Look for "The Interpreter" by John Colapinto in the April 16th New Yorker
> magazine.
> --
> Professor Michelle Commeyras
> Department of Language and Literacy Education
> University of Georgia
> 706-542-2718
> (currently being forwarded to
> _______________________________________________
> xmca mailing list

David D. Preiss Ph.D.
Profesor Auxiliar / Assistant Professor
Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Escuela de Psicología.
Av. Vicuña Mackenna 4860.
Macul, Santiago de Chile.
Teléfono: (56-2) 354-4605
Fax: (56-2) 354-4844.
xmca mailing list
Received on Mon Apr 16 20:23 PDT 2007

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Fri Mar 21 2008 - 16:41:48 PDT