Slides in this set
*Noam Chomsky is a linguist and political advisor as well
as many other things too.
*Here are a few of his theories:
*The Logical Structure of Linguistic Theory
*Biological Inheritance of Syntax Theory
*Cognition vs. Heredity Theory
*Noam Chomsky…read more
* Chomsky argues that language acquisition is an innate structure or
function of the human brain based on these factors:
* Between the ages of 3 to 10 a child is most likely to learn a
language and grasp fluency.
* Parents don't need to coax a child to speak, if they are around
language production, children will work to produce the language.
* It doesn't matter if a child is corrected, they still grasp the
language in the same manner and speak the same way. During one
stage of development a child will make things plural that are
already plural despite being corrected.
- In one case a child, after being corrected several times by her
Mum to say feet instead of feets, looked at the mother, said "ohh,"
as if she understood and then proceeded to say feets.
*The logical structure
of linguistic theory…read more
* In his first book "Syntactic Structures" which was published in 1957,
Noam first opposed the idea that children have to start fresh with
* He thought that children are born with a sort of "hard-wired" syntax
which enables them to grasp languages.
* Then the child can choose the language and grammar for their
particular environment from the available options in the brain.
* He concluded the brains capacity for language is a biological
inheritance, then the specific language is activated by the child's
interaction in an environment.
* Chomsky described the child's brain as "a CD player set to "play"
language; when the CD for a certain language is inserted, that is the
language that the child learns."
*Biological Inheritance of
Syntax theory…read more
*This was an addition to a previous theory in which he
says a child's knowledge of syntax consists of a group of
linguistic principles that define the form of any
*These principles are connected with "switches" which
are triggered by a child's language environment.
* Chomsky sees language development in children as a
separate aspect of knowledge, apart from the rest of
cognition or mental functioning.
*There has been a large debate about the origins of
language and it has shifted away from an emphasis in
innate capabilities and towards a larger awareness of
*Language acquisition is now perceived as a process more
complex than binary choices that requires more thinking.
*Cognition Vs Hereditary