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The Evolutionary Emergence of LanguageEvidence and Inference$
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Rudolf Botha and Martin Everaert

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199654840

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199654840.001.0001

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Exploring the gaps between primate calls and human language

Exploring the gaps between primate calls and human language

Chapter:
(p.181) 10 Exploring the gaps between primate calls and human language
Source:
The Evolutionary Emergence of Language
Author(s):

Alban Lemasson

Karim Ouattara

Klaus Zuberbühler

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199654840.003.0010

This chapter identifies a number of parallels between properties of human language and the vocalizations used in primate communication. By pinpointing these parallels, it aims to counter the currently widely held view that primate vocal behaviour is irrelevant for theories of language evolution. The chapter first reviews recent studies on primate vocal behaviour which are relevant to questions of signal flexibility and control. Next, it considers the evidence across the primate order which may bear on key language properties that are not related to acoustic plasticity.

Keywords:   language evolution, vocalization, primate communication, vocal behaviour

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