Speaking of Science | Language and Being Human: Foundations of Human Communication in Infancy
Where: New York Society for Ethical Culture
2 W. 64th St.
212-874-5210 Price: Suggested donation $10
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With Dr. Athena Vouloumanos, Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, New York University.
Perceptual biases for listening to speech are a hallmark of early human development, evident just hours after birth. How do these early proclivities develop and how do they contribute to human communicative development? I will draw from behavioral and neural data to discuss how infants come to recognize properties of speech that are relevant to its use for intentional communication by humans. Before preverbal infants produce or understand many words, they recognize how speech is used by others to communicate about different types of entities in the world. This early communicative competence may provide infants with a channel for learning from others and lay a foundation for our social and cultural life as humans.