Article

Social Mechanisms in Early Language Acquisition: Understanding Integrated Brain Systems Supporting Language

Patricia K. Kuhl

in The Oxford Handbook of Social Neuroscience

Published in print September 2011 | ISBN: 9780195342161
Published online September 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780195342161.013.0043

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

 Social Mechanisms in Early Language Acquisition: Understanding Integrated Brain Systems Supporting Language

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Social Psychology

GO

Show Summary Details

Preview

This chapter advances a new hypothesis—that in the earliest phases of language acquisition, infants combine a powerful set of domain-general computational skills with their equally extraordinary social skills to “crack the speech code.” Further, it is hypothesized that the social brain—in ways we have yet to understand—“gates” the computational mechanisms underlying learning in the domain of language. Four levels at which the gating mechanism might work are developed. It is argued that the assertion that social factors gate language learning explains not only how typically developing children acquire language, but also why children with autism exhibit twin deficits in social cognition and language, and why nonhuman animals with impressive computational abilities do not acquire language.

Keywords: language acquisition; infants; domain-general computational skills; social skills; social brain

Article.  12109 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Cognitive Neuroscience ; Social Psychology

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.