Monthly Archives: October 2012

The giant soda ban as epistemological crisis

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This sounds like the setup to a joke, but I really was just minding my own business on a bench in Washington Square Park when I was approached by a perky young woman with an iPad and some pointed questions about New York’s proposed ban … Read More

What if speech is just a gooey, eggy mess all the way down the line?

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Last week in discussing Daniel Everett’s latest book, I touched briefly on some controversial issues in speech perception. I claimed, a bit glibly, that approaches to the problem in which it is assumed that the goal of speech perception is to recover abstract symbolic units … Read More

Daniel Everett’s Recent Book is Mostly Not About Recursion and the Pirahã

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Pirahã settlement

It’s odd that the release of this book served mainly as an occasion for the re-ignition of the “Universal Grammar (UG) is recursion/Pirahã has no recursion, so UG is wrong/no it isn’t/and also UG isn’t just recursion/oh and also starlings do recursion/etc.” debate, when the … Read More

A dog, two monkeys and “Foundations of Cognitive Neuro- psychology”

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I know some of you out there are in the midst of chaotic semesters, already starting to feel like the grasshopper who fiddled away the long days of summer without preparing enough lecture notes, and now must squeeze class preparation into days that feel too … Read More


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