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Introduction to the Special Issue on the Emergence of Sound Systems

Little, H. (2017). Introduction to the Special Issue on the Emergence of Sound Systems. The Journal of Language Evolution, 2(1), 1-3. doi:10.1093/jole/lzx014.
How did human sound systems get to be the way they are? Collecting contributions implementing a wealth of methods to address this question, this special issue treats language and speech as being the result of a complex adaptive system. The work throughout provides evidence and theory at the levels of phylogeny, glossogeny and ontogeny. In taking a multi-disciplinary approach that considers interactions within and between these levels of selection, the papers collectively provide a valuable, integrated contribution to existing work on the evolution of speech and sound systems.
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The Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics is an institute of the German Max Planck Society. Our mission is to undertake basic research into the psychological,social and biological foundations of language. The goal is to understand how our minds and brains process language, how language interacts with other aspects of mind, and how we can learn languages of quite different types.

The institute is situated on the campus of the Radboud University. We participate in the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, and have particularly close ties to that institute's Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging. We also participate in the Centre for Language Studies. A joint graduate school, the IMPRS in Language Sciences, links the Donders Institute, the CLS and the MPI.

 

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