Primate Calls, Human Language, and Nonverbal Communication [and Comments and Reply]

  title={Primate Calls, Human Language, and Nonverbal Communication [and Comments and Reply]},
  author={Robbins Burling and David F. Armstrong and BenG. Blount and Catherine A. Callaghan and Mary Lecron Foster and Barbara J. King and Sue Taylor Parker and Osamu Sakura and William C. Stokoe and Ron Wallace and J. Wallman and Andrew Whiten and Sherman Wilcox and Thomas Wynn},
  journal={Current Anthropology},
  pages={25 - 53}
Etude des deux formes de communication utilisee par les humains : le langage et la communication non verbale ; cette derniere forme etant utilisee par les primates pour communiquer. Commentaires, reponse de l'auteur. 

Primate Vocalization, Gesture, and the Evolution of Human Language

It is argued that it was the coupling of gestural communication with enhanced capacities for imitation that made possible the emergence of protosign to provide essential scaffolding for protospeech in the evolution of protolanguage.

Vocal responsiveness in male wild chimpanzees: implications for the evolution of language.

  • A. Arcadi
  • Biology, Psychology
    Journal of human evolution
  • 2000
The results indicate that wild chimpanzees vocalize at low rates, tend not to respond to calls that they hear, and, when they do respond, tend to give calls that are similar to the ones they have heard.

What gestures of nonhuman primates can (and cannot) tell us about language evolution

The aim is to contribute to the ongoing debate about how language might have evolved by evaluating findings from comparative research on the different building blocks of language, and by discussing how these data support a gestural origin of human language.

Do chimpanzees have voluntary control of their facial expressions and vocalizations

It is argued that recent studies in chimpanzees suggest that they do, in fact have some degree of voluntary control of both their vocalizations as well as their facial expressions, and that chimpanzees understand the functional significance of using vocalizations or sounds in communicative and social contexts.

Primate Vocal Communication: A Useful Tool for Understanding Human Speech and Language Evolution?

It is concluded that comparative research on primate vocal behavior is a very promising tool for deepening the authors' understanding of the evolution of human speech and language, but much is still to be done as many aspects of monkey and ape vocalizations remain largely unexplored.

On Neanderthal Crania and Speech: Response to Lieberman

This is the publisher's version, also available electronically from

Animal Cognition: Multimodal Tactics of Orangutan Communication

Joint Attention in Apes and Humans

Joint attention is the ability to intentionally co-orient towards a common focus. This ability develops in a protracted, mosaic fashion in humans. We review evidence of joint attention in humans and

Play as Precursor of Phonology and Syntax

The theme of language as play suggests inquiries into non-cognitive uses of language such as that found in riddles, jingles, or tongue twisters — and beyond this into the poetic and ritual function

Neuropragmatics: Neuropsychological Constraints on Formal Theories of Dialogue

We are interested in the validation of a cognitive theory of human communication, grounded in a speech acts perspective. The theory we refer to is outlined, and a number of predictions are drawn from



Primate Communication and the Gestural Origin of Language

  • G. Hewes
  • Psychology
    Current Anthropology
  • 1992
Wallace, Tylor, Wundt, Johannesson, and others have proposed that human language had its basis in hand and arm gestures. The Gardners' work with the chimpanzee Washoe, Premack's study of the

So you think gestures are nonverbal

In this article I argue that gestures and speech are parts of the same psychological structure and share a computational stage. The argument is based on the very close temporal, semantic, pragmatic,

Language capacities of nonhuman animals

This paper reviews the language analogue studies with great apes and cetaceans, examining the utility of the different methods and reviewing the animals' accomplishments, and concluding that chimpanzees and bonobos do not threaten human uniqueness with respect to speech and language.

Vocal Communication in Primates and Birds: Parallels and Contrasts

The rationale for employing broadly comparative approaches to the investigation of functional and developmental aspects of primate and avian vocal signaling is outlined, some of the results are reported, and where ethologists investigating avian and primate vocal systems may benefit from mutual awareness of each other’s research is indicated.


ABSTRACT: An evolutionary scenario for the evolution of language, beginning with handedness, gesture and pantomime, then propositions and speech, resulting in an all-purpose symbol system capable of

Language in Primates: Perspectives and Implications

Linguistic Media and Training Methods.- Clever Hans Phenomenon.- Clever Hans and Primate Language Experiments.- Cognitive and Communicative Abilities in an Orangutan.- Continuities Between

The Biology and Evolution of Language

Drawing on data from anatomy, neurophysiology, physiology, and behavioral biology, Lieberman develops a new approach to the puzzle of language, arguing that it is the result of many evolutionary compromises.

The Repertoire of Nonverbal Behavior: Categories, Origins, Usage, and Coding

Ir we arc to understand fully any instance of a person's non-verbal behavior that is, any movement or position of the face and/or the bodywe must discover how that behavior became part of the penon's

Monkey responses to three different alarm calls: evidence of predator classification and semantic communication.

Recordings of the alarms played back when predators were absent caused Vervet monkeys to run into trees for leopard alarms, look up for eagle alarms, and look down for snake alarms.