• Research Paper on:
    Language Defined

    Number of Pages: 4


    Summary of the research paper:

    In four pages this report considers how language might be defined and then determines that any definition would be too limited in scope and minimize its human significance. Three sources are cited in the bibliography.

    Name of Research Paper File: D0_BWdeflan.doc

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    consider whether or not discourse and the actual formation of creative thought are dependent on language and the ability of language to adequately express thought. Fundamental Definition An encyclopedic definition  (Columbia) explains that language is: "systematic communication by vocal symbols. It is a universal characteristic of the human species. Nothing is known of its origin, and scientists generally hold that  it has been so long in use that the length of time writing is known to have existed (7,900 years at most) is trifling by comparison" (pp. 22073). In other  words, language is a fundamental aspect of what it is to be human. But it is also important to understand that language is a cultural construct in which certain objects  and ideas may be classified in different ways that are completely related to the culture in which they are used. For example, gender, age, ethnicity may determine how and  when certain forms of different words are used. Certain words may be thought of as forbidden while others may be thought of as sacred. The ways in which people address  one another may also, depending on the culture, change when related to gender, age, and status. Every human being has the genetic capability to learn and use some form  of language, even those who may have severe developmental and physical disabilities. Sounds Combined into Words To define language as being only sounds that are combined into words that are  then combined into sentences minimizes the overall importance and pervasiveness of language as part of human existence. Communication takes place through many other forms of language that are not  necessarily verbally expressed. Language also shapes and then serves to regulate thought by providing the various concepts that actually guide human thought. Once again, it is culture that 

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