Visible movements of the orofacial area: evidence for gestural or multimodal theories of language evolution?

  title={Visible movements of the orofacial area: evidence for gestural or multimodal theories of language evolution?},
  author={Sławomir Wacewicz and Przemysław Żywiczyński and Sylwester Orzechowski},
The age-old debate between the proponents of the gesture-first and speech-first positions has returned to occupy a central place in current language evolution theorizing. The gestural scenarios, suffering from the problem known as “modality transition” (why a gestural system would have changed into a predominantly spoken system), frequently appeal to the gestures of the orofacial area as a platform for this putative transition. Here, we review currently available evidence on the significance of… Expand
Multimodal-first or pantomime-first?: Communicating events through pantomime with and without vocalization
A persistent controversy in language evolution research has been whether language emerged in the gestural-visual or in the vocal-auditory modality. A "dialectic" solution to this age-old debate hasExpand
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  • L. Vainio
  • Psychology, Medicine
  • Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews
  • 2019
Novel insight is presented on how processes controlling the two primary grasp components of manipulative hand movements might be systematically connected to motor processes involved in producing certain articulatory gestures. Expand
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Abstract Why is language unique? How and why did it emerge? Such questions are emblematic of the Western intellectual tradition, and while some even today see them as intractable, a majority considerExpand
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Orofacial gestures in language evolution: The auditory feedback hypothesis
The so-called gestural theories of language origins have remained a central focus of language evolution research for at least a decade. Despite important differences, their varieties underscore theExpand
Slip of the tongue: Implications for evolution and language development
Tongue protrusions were investigated across a range of cognitive tasks that required varying degrees of manual action: precision motor action, gross motor action and no motor actions and the rate of tongue protrusion was influenced by the motor requirements of the task and tongues were significantly right-biased for only precision manual motor action. Expand
From manual gesture to speech: A gradual transition
Evidence that the transition from primarily manual to primarily vocal language was a gradual process is reviewed, and is best understood if it is supposed that speech itself a gestural system rather than an acoustic system, an idea captured by the motor theory of speech perception and articulatory phonology. Expand
Primate Communication and the Gestural Origin of Language [and Comments and Reply]
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 theExpand
Communicative Signaling, Lateralization and Brain Substrate in Nonhuman Primates: Toward a Gestural or a Multimodal Origin of Language?
Language is a complex intentional, syntactical and referential system involving a left-hemispheric specialization of the brain in which some cerebral regions such as Broca’s and Wernicke’s areas playExpand
Primate Communication and the Gestural Origin of Language
  • G. Hewes
  • Sociology
  • 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 theExpand
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  • B. Woll
  • Computer Science, Medicine
  • Front. Psychol.
  • 2014
Echo phonology provides naturalistic examples of a possible mechanism accounting for part of the evolution of language, with evidence both of the transfer of manual actions to oral ones and the conversion of units of an iconic manual communication system into a largely arbitrary vocal communication system. Expand
From mouth to hand: Gesture, speech, and the evolution of right-handedness
  • M. Corballis
  • Medicine, Psychology
  • Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • 2003
It is argued that language evolved from manual gestures, gradually incorporating vocal elements, and may be traced through changes in the function of Broca's area, the code for both the production of manual reaching movements and the perception of the same movements performed by others. Expand
Chimpanzee Vocal Signaling Points to a Multimodal Origin of Human Language
The activity observed in the Broca’s area homologue reflects the production of vocal signals by the chimpanzees, suggesting this critical human language region was involved in vocal signaling in the common ancestor of both modern humans and chimpanzees. Expand
The origin of human multi-modal communication
  • S. Levinson, J. Holler
  • Computer Science, Medicine
  • Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2014
It becomes apparent that human communication has a layered structure, where the layers may be plausibly assigned different phylogenetic and evolutionary origins—especially in the light of recent thoughts on the emergence of voluntary breathing and spoken language. Expand