Perceptual grouping has traditionally been thought to be governed by innate, universal principles. However, recent work has found differences in Japanese and English speakers' non-linguistic perceptual grouping, implicating language in non-linguistic perceptual processes (Iversen, Patel, & Ohgushi, 2008). Two experiments test Japanese- and English-learning infants of 5-6 and 7-8 months of age to explore the development of grouping preferences. At 5-6 months, neither the Japanese nor the English infants revealed any systematic perceptual biases. However, by 7-8 months, the same age (...) as when linguistic phrasal grouping develops, infants developed non-linguistic grouping preferences consistent with their language's structure (and the grouping biases found in adulthood). These results reveal an early difference in non-linguistic perception between infants growing up in different language environments. The possibility that infants' linguistic phrasal grouping is bootstrapped by abstract perceptual principles is discussed. (shrink)
This edited book offers a broad selection of interdisciplinary studies within cognitive science. The book illustrates and documents how cognitive science offers a unifying framework for the interaction of fields of study focusing on the human mind from linguistics and philosophy to psychology and the history of science. A selection of renowned contributors provides authoritative historical, theoretical and empirical perspectives on more than six decades of research with a special focus on the progress of cognitive science in Central Europe. Readers (...) encounter a bird’s eye view of geographical and linguistic diversity brought about by the cognitive revolution, as it is reflected in the writings of leading authors, many of whom are former students and collaborators of Csaba Pléh, a key figure of the cognitive turn in Central Europe, to whom this book is dedicated. The book appeals to students and researchers looking for the ways various approaches to the mind and the brain intersect. (shrink)
In an attempt to provide a unified model of language-related mental processes, Jackendoff puts forward significant modifications to the generative architecture of the language faculty. While sympathetic to the overall objective of the book, my review points out that one aspect of the proposal – the status of the lexicon – lacks sufficient empirical support.