Wednesday, March 28, 2012
An ex-missionary might have turned linguistic theory on it's head
Daniel Everett went to live with an Amazonian tribe in the hopes of converting them to Christianity. He eventually learned their complex language, suffered from malaria, lost his faith, and he thought quite a bit about a theory made famous by the esteemed Noam Chomsky: Universal Grammar. Based on what he learned about the language of the Amazonian tribe, Everett has written a book in which he tries to refute this widely-held thesis. It's making some serious waves in philosophy and linguistics departments around the world. An article on Everett and his book can be found here.