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The Evolution of Language: Towards Gestural Hypotheses

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Przemysław Żywiczyński and Sławomir Wacewicz

This book discusses the scope and development of the science of language evolution – a newly emergent field that investigates the origin of language. The book is addressed to audiences who are not professionally involved in science and presents the problems of language origins together with introductory information on such topics as the theory of evolution, elements of linguistic theory, the neural infrastructure of language or the signalling theory.

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Fig. 1.1: The Tower of Babel by Pieter Bruegel the Elder. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Pieter_Bruegel_the_Elder_-_The_Tower_of_Babel_(Vienna)_-_Google_Art_Project.jpg. DOA 12 June 2019.

Fig. 1.2: Statement of the Société de linguistique de Paris banning glottogenetic speculation.

Fig. 2.1: How natural selection works (chart adapted from A.R. Wallace). http://www.globalchange.umich.edu/globalchange1/current/lectures/selection/boxes.gif. DOA: 08 Aug 2015.

Fig. 2.2: Mutation and natural selection. http://www.daviddarling.info/images/natural_selection.png. DOA: 08 Aug 2015.

Fig. 2.3: The traditional – and erroneous – depiction of anthropogenesis. http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/news/2008/10/081007_endofevolution.shtml. DOA: 08 Aug 2015.

Fig. 2.4: The correct depiction of anthropogenesis. http://www.amnh.org/education/resources/rfl/web/hhoguide/family-tree.html. DOA: 08 Aug 2015.

Fig. 3.1: Developments that led to the contemporary research field of the evolution of language.

Fig. 3.2: The evolution of primates.

Fig. 3.3: Lexigrams used by Duane Rumbaugh and Sue Savage-Rumbaugh’s research group. https://sites.google.com/site/austinstoll12communication/home/lexigram. DOA: 15 Mar 2017.

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