Biological foundations of language

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A little information on how the brain processes and controles languages.

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Biological foundations of language

  1. 1. PsycholinguisticsIsabel Matos & Sara Pacheco
  2. 2. Biological Foundations of Language Brain Mechanisms and Language Lateralization of Language Processes
  3. 3. Brain Mechanisms and Language Major Types of Aphasia
  4. 4. Broca’s aphasia = expressive aphasia Paul Broca•Agrammatic speech/writing•One word at a time•Able to comprehend
  5. 5. Brain Mechanisms and Language Implications for Normal Language Processing Stimuli Visual Input Visual region Wernicke’s Arcuate Broca’s area of the brain area fasciculus Somasentory Wernicke’s Arcuate Tactile input region Broca’s area area fasciculus of the brainAuditory Input Auditory region Wernicke’s Arcuate Broca’s area of the brain area fasciculus
  6. 6. Broca’s aphasia = lack of production Wernicke’s aphasia = lack of comprehension Conduction aphasia = no relation between both processesCaramazza and Zurif (1976) Broca’s area may (1) The book that the girl is reading is yellow. be necessary (2) The horse that the bear is kicking is brown. for syntax Broca’s Linebarger, Schwartz and Safran (1983) aphasics may be able to construct (3) How many did you see birds in the park? syntactic representations (4) The little boy fell down, didn’t it? but fail to use them
  7. 7. Lateralization of Language Processes Split-Brain Research - Severed corpus callosum - No communication between hemispheres Preventing epilepsy What is perceived with the left visual fields goes to the right hemisphere and viceversa.
  8. 8. Lateralization of Language Processes Lateralization in Normal Brains The visual field task The dichotic listening task Different stimuli for Broadbent (1954) each ear Showed Left Input Right ear Input hemisphere Right hemisphere
  9. 9. The dichotic listening task Different stimuli for each ear Normal Brains Contralateral are stronger than Ipsalateral pathways pathways The dichotic listening task Split Brains Speech Left ear Right ear Stimuli
  10. 10. failed The contralateral pathway is not Left ear helpful – no corpus callosum because The ipsalateral pathway is blocked by the contralateral pathway.Wood (1975) Non-linguistic task linguistic task Greater rightGreater left hemisphere activityhemisphere activity
  11. 11. Lateralization of Language Processes Left Hemisphere Right Hemisphere •Better appretiation of pragmatic aspects oSarcasm oWhite lies oHumor •Alternative meanings last longer
  12. 12. Thank you

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