Will the Evidence for Linguistic Nativism Please Stand Up?

Fiona Cowie

in What's Within?

Published in print January 2003 | ISBN: 9780195159783
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199849529 | DOI:

Series: Philosophy of Mind Series

Will the Evidence for Linguistic Nativism Please Stand Up?

Show Summary Details


Regardless of whether Chomsky's grammar constraints may be learned from experience of not, the author argues that there is no “back door” to nativism. In relation to finding out whether there exists a special faculty for language learning, the author presents how she, on a more personal note and in terms of language acquisition, is more inclined to going with a weak nativist position since she believes that learning a language would probably entail one or more faculties of mind as a basis. Although the open question remains about how nativism may be associated with the acquisition of language, examining the available evidence would lean towards a faculties hypothesis.

Keywords: Chomsky; grammar constraints; experience; nativism; language learning; language acquisition; faculties hypothesis; weak nativism

Chapter.  16183 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Mind

Full text: subscription required

How to subscribe Recommend to my Librarian

Buy this work at Oxford University Press »

Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.