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ERIC Number: ED455527
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Mar
Pages: 22
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Toward a Coevolution of Language Theories: Linking Composition with Brain and Language Studies.
Adkison, Stephen
Focusing specifically on the theories offered by language development theorist L. S. Vygotsky and evolutionary theorist Terrence Deacon, this paper examines the ways in which theories of language in composition studies coincide and differ with the theories currently being researched in neurobiology and physical anthropology. This examination considers a broader and deeper view of language development than is possible from the perspective of any single discipline, a view which may eventually redefine the boundaries of language development theories in both composition and brain studies. For example, PET (Position Emission Topography) brain scans of language use suggest exactly the view of language use and meaning-making developed by psychologist Jerome Bruner. Similarly, Deacon's explanation of Baldwinian selection in the evolution of language and Vygotsky's concepts of language learning and creativity dovetail, and indeed offer compelling mutual support. Through an analysis of this type of correspondence between the different areas of research, this presentation offers an interdisciplinary argument in which theories of brain and language evolution give language and learning theories in composition studies a sound underpinning, while at the same time language and learning theories offer a complementary conceptual framework for neurobiological and language evolution studies. This inquiry into the nature of language--how it works, and why and how it evolved--has important implications for composition studies and approaches to both cognitive theory and how this pedagogy is developed. A discussion of these implications and how they can be linked to a wider context, that of the classroom and the teaching of writing and language, as well as language and learning in the disciplines is included. (Contains 12 references.) (Author/RS)
Publication Type: Information Analyses; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A