By Steven Pinker

ISBN-10: 0670063274

ISBN-13: 9780670063277

Long island instances bestselling writer Steven Pinker possesses that infrequent blend of clinical flair and verbal eloquence that allows him to supply lucid causes of deep and strong principles. His past books—including the Pulitzer Prize finalist The clean Slate, have catapulted him into the limelight as one in every of today’s most crucial and well known technological know-how writers.

Now, within the Stuff of notion, Pinker marries of the topics he understands top: language and human nature. the result's a desirable examine how our phrases clarify our nature. What does swearing show approximately our feelings? Why does innuendo expose whatever approximately relationships? Pinker unearths how our use of prepositions and tenses faucets into chiefly human ideas of area and time, and the way our nouns and verbs converse to our notions of topic. Even the names we supply our infants have vital issues to assert approximately our relationships to our kids and to society.

along with his signature wit and elegance, Pinker takes on clinical questions like no matter if language impacts idea, in addition to forays into daily life—why is bulk email known as junk mail and the way do romantic comedies get such mileage out of the ambiguities of relationship? The Stuff of proposal is a brilliantly crafted and hugely readable paintings that may entice enthusiasts of readers of every thing from The egocentric Gene and Blink to Eats, Shoots & Leaves.

Show description

Read Online or Download The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window into Human Nature PDF

Best linguistics books

Download e-book for kindle: Babel No More: The Search for the World's Most Extraordinary by Michael Erard

In Babel not more, Michael Erard, “a monolingual with benefits,” units out on a quest to fulfill language superlearners and make experience in their psychological powers. at the method he uncovers the secrets and techniques of old figures just like the nineteenth-century Italian cardinal Joseph Mezzofanti, who used to be acknowledged to talk seventy-two languages, in addition to these of residing language-superlearners similar to Alexander Arguelles, a modern day polyglot who understands dozens of languages and exhibits Erard the tips of the exchange to provide him a depressing glimpse into the lifetime of obsessive language acquisition.

Jenny Baranick's Kiss My Asterisk: A Feisty Guide to Punctuation and Grammar PDF

Grammar has eventually enable its hair down! not like uptight grammar books that weigh down us with each grammar rule, Kiss My Asterisk is sort of a bikini: it's enjoyable, flirty, and covers in basic terms an important bits. Its classes, that are one hundred pc freed from advanced grammar jargon, were rigorously chosen to incorporate today's most typical, visible errors—the ones that confuse our readers or cause them to wonder whether we're, in reality, smarter than a 5th grader.

Download PDF by V Evans: Round-up 4: Student's Book (Round Up Grammar Practice)

*Colourful bins and tables current language sincerely *Lively, illustrated routines and video games make perform enjoyable and powerful *Pre-tests establish scholars' problems *Regular revision sections and development assessments consolidate language studying *CD-ROMs offer extra grammar perform and video games *Teacher's advisor comprises resolution keys and additional photocopiable try

Integrational Linguistics: A First Reader by Roy Harris, George Wolf (Editors) PDF

This selection of readings is complementary to "Introduction to Integrational Linguistics (Language & communique Library, Vol. 17)", yet can be utilized independently. It brings jointly for the 1st time 24 key papers in integrational linguistics, and is meant to function a simple analyzing record for college students and others making the 1st acquaintance with the topic.

Additional resources for The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window into Human Nature

Example text

The nought-noughts? The naughties? Traditional etymology is o f limited help in figuring out what ushers a word into existence and whether it will catch on. Etymologists can trace most words back for centuries or more, but the trail goes cold well before they reach the actual moment at which a primordial wordsmith first dubbed a concept with a sound of his or her choosing. With recent coinages, though, we can follow the twisted path to wordhood in real time. Spam is not, as some people believe, an acronym for Short, Pointless, and Annoying Messages.

They must have extracted the mental equiva­ lent o f grammatical rules that add suffixes to words and arrange verbs and particles in phrases. D O W N THE RABBIT HOLE 29 The triumph of language acquisition is even more impressive when we consider that a talking child has solved a knotty instance of the problem o f induction: observing a finite sample o f events and framing a generalization that embraces the infinite set from which the events are drawn. Scientists engage in induction when they go beyond their data and put forward laws that make predictions about cases they haven't observed, such as that gas under pressure will be absorbed by a liquid, or that warm-blooded animals have larger body sizes at higher latitudes.

Yet the returns keep coming. Philosophers of science argue that theo­ ries are not just peeled off the data but constrained beforehand by reason­ able assumptions about the way the universe works, such as that nature is lawful and that simpler theories that fit the data are more likely to be true than complex ones. 7 8 As children learn their mother tongue, they, too, are solving an induc­ tion problem. When listening to their parents and siblings, they can't just file away every sentence and draw on that list in the future, or they would be as mindless as parrots.

Download PDF sample

The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window into Human Nature by Steven Pinker

by James

Rated 4.85 of 5 – based on 46 votes