Article published in:Biolinguistic Investigations on the Language Faculty
Edited by Anna Maria Di Sciullo
[Linguistik Aktuell/Linguistics Today 235] 2016
► pp. 3–40
The biolinguistics program
Questions and hypotheses
The Biolinguistics Program is an emergent interdisciplinary field encompassing natural sciences, neurosciences and the humanities. Its core object of inquiry is human language. The overarching questions it raises are the following: what is language and what is the relation between language and biology. The central hypothesis it brings to the fore is that human language has a biological basis as well as unique traits that make language unique in the biological world. This paper details some of the specific questions and the hypotheses that have been formulated in this field, and it considers recent works on the intersection of language and biology. We start by stating the rationale for Biolinguistics. We then identify the questions and hypotheses raised by this field. Finally, we consider works that aim to bridge the explanatory gap between language and biology while preserving the unique properties of language.
Published online: 24 November 2016
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