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The paper discusses the nativist theory that children have some built in or learned knowledge of ideas before the actual development of language. These theorists believe that functions of language are universal and innate. The paper then looks at the functionalists and anti-nativists who argue that culture and language itself shape the meanings behind language. Finally, the paper discusses those theorists who believe that children possess innate understanding of ideas before language and also learn about ideas from language and culture. The paper examines the ideas of Dan I. Slobin, Behrens Heike, Melissa Bowerman and Soonja Choi.
Sample of Sources Used:
- Behrens, Heike. "Cognitive-conceptual Development and the Acquisition of Grammatical Morphemes: the Development of Time Concepts and Verb Tense." Language Acquisition and Conceptual Development Eds. Melissa Bowerman, and Steven Levinson. Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press, 2001. 450-474.
- Bowerman, Melissa, and Soonja Choi. "Shaping Meanings for Language: Universal and Language-Specific in the Acquisition of Spatial Semantic Categories." Language Acquisition and Conceptual Development Eds. Melissa Bowerman, and Steven Levinson. Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press, 2001. 475-511.
- Brown, Penelope. "Learning to Talk About Motion Up and Down in Tzeltal: Is There a Language-Specific Bias for Verb Learning?" Language Acquisition and Conceptual Development Eds. Melissa Bowerman, and Steven Levinson. Cambridge, MA: Cambridge University Press, 2001. 512-543.
- Maratsos, Michael and Matheny, Laura. "Language Specificity and Elasticity: Brain and Clinical Syndrome Studies." Annual Review of Psychology 1994: 487-506.
- Shanker, Stuart et al. "What Children Know When They Know What a Name Is: The Non-Cartesian View of Language Acquisition." Current Anthropology Aug.-Oct. 2001: 481-514.
Cite this Term Paper:
Language Acquisition (2007, May 20) Retrieved December 05, 2023, from https://www.academon.com/term-paper/language-acquisition-95265/
"Language Acquisition" 20 May 2007. Web. 05 December. 2023. <https://www.academon.com/term-paper/language-acquisition-95265/>