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Biological Function of Language：LB356~LB357
內文：Language and cognition
When you translate, you have to translate paragraph by paragraph. Not begin with anywhere in middle of a paragraph.
Concept formation is considered to be …..(page.355) …We may ask now whether (end of page 355)(begin of page.356) the existence of such a word (say in the speaker’s language knowledge) is responsible for making a given concept particularly salient and easy to attain.
A survey of reports of such tests (Carroll, 1964) does, indeed, give that impression; in most instances concepts that may be named, or where the principle may be formulated easily in the native language of the subjects, are felt to be easier to attain in experiments than when this is not the case. However, these findings do not necessarily indicate that natural language is a biasing factor in the formation of concepts in general. The concepts tagged by the vocabulary of natural languages are not completely arbitrary as may be seen from the large degree of semantic correspondences between languages. It is true that translation always bring out some absence of correspondence between two languages. However, the experience of the physical environment finds expression in all languages. It is mostly the aspect or mode of reference and the metaphorical extensions that vary. Comparative studies in the language of experience indicate that those phenomena that have perceptual or cognitive salience in the environment (for our species) always are particularly amenable to reference, regardless of the natural language. Therefore, if name ability tends to be coupled with cognitive salience, it is not certain whether results in concept formation experiments are due to subject’ naming habits or whether both the naming and the concept attainment are due to a more basic factor such as biologically given cognitive organization.
Certain other considerations should make us doubtful about any strong claim upon the “constraint” of words upon its speaker’s cognitive capacities. A wide range of human activities is based upon concept formation that must have taken place in the absence of naturally occurring words. Examples are the development of mathematics ( where a language is simply created ad hoc as the concepts are developed ), or of music, or of the visual arts or of science in general. People in underdeveloped countries, who are suddenly introduced to a new technology for which there is no terminology in their language can learn the new concepts by simply introducing foreign words into their vernacular or by making new use of old words. Once more, this may be explained by seeing naming as a creative process, Once more, this may be explained by seeing naming as a creative process, not a rigid convention.
The most dramatic semantic difference between languages may be found in the realm of feelings and attitudes. Here, indeed, translation is often a total impossibility. Are we able to demonstrate that our awareness of personal feelings is selectively enhanced by words handed down to us through semantic traditions? Empirical demonstrations would be difficult and I am, frankly, dubious about its promise.
Consider the difficulty to describe accurately the nature of feelings, for instance during a psychiatric interview; or our awareness of how coarse and nondescript some of the words for feelings and attitudes are, for example, honor, love, pride, etc. In many instances, our emotions appear to be more subtle than can be indicated by the use of these threadbare terms.
(5) Cognition in Deaf Children
Until the age of six, deaf children have usually little more than a repertoire of ten to fifty intelligible words and have no skill as yet in understanding language through lip-reading or common reading. Thus, it is fair to say that they have no language as yet. A comparison of their cognitive capacities with those of hearing children ought to be revealing. We must, however, be aware that deprivations of this sort do more to the children than merely render them incommunicado. Because of their handicap their opportunity for asking questions, for developing certain learning sets, for becoming acquainted with social traditions and recorded histories, and for adjustment to adult attitudes (particularly the knowledge that adults are a potential source of information) is dramatically reduced. This general impoverishment of input is very likely to have produced different learning histories for this group than for hearing children. Our investigations, therefore, may not merely indicate whether cognitive processes can be carried on in the absence of language, but cognitive differences discovered by certain procedures are in danger of confounding basic cognitive capacities of the child with the presence or absence of previously acquired knowledge.
This is just one of four major reasons why at present the published reports on the cognitive status of deaf children is so contradictory.*
A second reason is the great diversity in aims, methods, and questions underlying the many reports that makes direct comparison between the various studies impossible.
A third source for differences between results is due to the difficult control and exclusion of language from the experimental situation. Even if task itself does not require a verbal response, high perform-ance may depend on understanding of complicated instructions and …..in which it is conducted. (The paragraph ends on page 358)
Figure 8.8 on page 358-359 must be scanned. Lengend of Fig. 8.8 must be typed and translated.
*Deaf children’s performance on cognitive tasks are reported to be essentially the same as that of hearing control groups in the following articles: Emmerig (1953),
一個單字的存在(用發言者的語言知識說) ， 負責使一個規定的概念特別顯著和容易取得。試驗(卡羅爾，1964)的報告的調查，結論不一定表明自然語言一定有偏見的原素在概念的形成內。在經驗的語言裡的比較，在物理環境的經驗表現下的全部語言中。 主要是參考的方面或模式和隱喻裡有知覺或者認識的salience的那些現象，如果名字能力傾向於和認識的salience相聯繫， 不肯定是否導致概念形成實驗。大部分人活動以發生在天生缺乏的情況形成概念為基礎，例子(語言完全創造專門發展的概念)，數學的發展、音樂、視覺藝術或者科學，國家中未充分發展的人， 會對突然引進的一項新技術，他們語言內沒有此專有名詞，獲悉新概念後把外國單字引入本國。 可能透過解釋命名成為一個有創造性的過程。認知較難準確描述感覺的性質，或者我們意識模糊難以分類一些話給的感覺和態度，例如榮譽、愛、驕傲。
1. 直到6 歲， 失聰兒童通常僅僅有10 到50 句易理解的話的劇目，在透過唇讀理解語言過程中，迄今很難去訂定他們沒有技能。
3. 結果之間差別的來源來自實驗情勢的語言難以控制和拒絕。 即使任務本身不需要文字回應，卻高度執行。