Video Fix: Noam Chomsky on Language’s Great Mysteries

July 13, 2016 2:33 pm

USA. Boston, Massachusetts. 2002. Professor Noam CHOMSKY.[lF][lF]Contact email: New York : photography@magnumphotos.com Paris : magnum@magnumphotos.fr London : magnum@magnumphotos.co.uk Tokyo : tokyo@magnumphotos.co.jp Contact phones: New York : +1 212 929 6000 Paris: + 33 1 53 42 50 00 London: + 44 20 7490 1771 Tokyo: + 81 3 3219 0771 Image URL: http://www.magnumphotos.com/Archive/C.aspx?VP3=ViewBox_VPage&IID=2K7O3R83XKEJ&CT=Image&IT=ZoomImage01_VFormLike every field of science, linguistics, too has its conundrums.

Big Think has asked Noam Chomsky, whose contributions to the field have earned him the title “the father of modern linguistics”, about the major debates in the science of language.

According to prof. Chomsky, two of the most fundamental and obvious, yet still unanswered questions are: “How come there are any languages at all?” and “Why are there apparently so many instead of just one?”

In this interview, Chomsky contemplates the relatively sudden and recent—in evolutionary terms—emergence of human language and its apparent, though as he goes on to explain, merely “superficial” diversity.

Written by  Milena Nowak

Terminology trainee at TermCoord

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