Vanity Fea

Language, feedback, interaction

Language, feedback, interaction A comment to Babel's Dawn on the origin of language.

"Language may have evolved us as much as we evolved it." — That can be taken for granted. Language provides a basic tool to organize and coordinate action, past, present and future - and it is through coordinated action (that is, social interaction gone rampant) that human groups become more complex, divide work, communicate, exchange, create traditions and cultural objects, and globalize economy. Of course each of these steps acts back on language, developing it as needed to accomodate a new situation. It is this process of continual feedback of new situations on the established language and social processes that characterizes human reality. It is a continuous process, but if one had to look for a kind of jump anywhere, I would look for the origin of what linguists call the double articulation of language: the double level structure of standard sounds to make words, and of words to make phrases. Show the mental makeup that allows these signs to be treated in an isolated way, and combined, and you will have given much insight into the device that hand-started the whole cultural dynamics.

Or the whole cultural dialectics of emergence. Including the turning back of language on itself, to represent and analyze language.

Er—guess I meant to write "the device that jump-started the whole cultural dynamics". But hands may have had something to do with it as well.

Lenguaje y gesto

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