Mind, Brain, and Language: Multidisciplinary Perspectives

Mind, Brain, and Language: Multidisciplinary Perspectives

Mind, Brain, and Language: Multidisciplinary Perspectives

Mind, Brain, and Language: Multidisciplinary Perspectives

Synopsis

Much of the groundbreaking work in many fields is now occurring at the intersection of traditional academic disciplines. This development is well demonstrated in this important and unique volume, which offers a multidisciplinary view of current findings and cutting-edge issues involving the relationship between mind, brain, and language. Marie T. Banich and Molly Mack have edited a collection of 11 invited chapters from top researchers (and have contributed two of their own chapters) to create a volume organized around five major topics-language emergence, influence, and development; models of language and language processing; the neurological bases of language; language disruption and loss; and dual-language systems. Topics range from the evolution of language and child-language acquisition to brain imaging and the "bilingual brain." To maintain continuity throughout, care has been taken to ensure that the chapters have been written in a style accessible to scholars across many disciplines, from anthropology and psycholinguistics to cognitive science and neurobiology. Because of its depth and breadth, this book is appropriate both as a textbook in a variety of undergraduate and graduate-level courses and as a valuable resource for researchers and scholars interested in further understanding the background of and current developments in our understanding of the mind/brain/language relationship.

Excerpt

The major objective of this book is to provide, within one volume, an overview of how the structure of language influences the way we think and how the organization of the brain influences language. The contributors to this volume examine these issues from a variety of distinct disciplinary vantage points, ranging from linguistics and philosophy to psychology and neuroscience. The impetus for such an interdisciplinary volume comes from our belief that major insights in science result from interaction and cross-fertilization between the discrete conceptualizations and approaches that occur within individual disciplines. What can emerge from the convergence of different perspectives are central truths. Yet interdisciplinary studies are often difficult because they require a breadth of knowledge that is hard for any one individual to obtain. Gaining access to knowledge within a new discipline can be complicated not only because most scientific writings are geared to a reader trained within a specific domain but also because each traditional discipline has its own implicit assumptions and specialized vocabulary.

This volume is designed to address this problem by providing an entry point for individuals who are interested in an interdisciplinary approach to issues related to mind, brain, and language. To that end, each chapter is written not only to be comprehensible to a specialist within a particular field of inquiry, but to be accessible to a generally educated reader. Yet there was also the need to provide breadth and rigor. To meet that goal, each chapter has been written by a noted individual within a particular discipline, providing an expert perspective on what his or her field can teach us about the interrelationships between mind, brain, and language. These experts provide a glimpse, by discussing both their . . .

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