a. In each of the pairs below, one statement is typical of human language (HL) while the other is more characteristic of animal communication (AC). Mark them HL and AC respectively.
i. The system produces an unlimited number of novel utterances. HL
ii. There is a closed repertory of distinctive utterances.AC
iii. The topic of communication is present in the immediate environment of the utterance. AC
iv. The system is acquired by learning. HL
v. The system is transmitted through genetic inheritance. AC
vi. The connection between signal and its meaning is arbitrary and conventional. HL
vii. The connection between signal and its meaning is iconic and natural.aC
b. Wolves express subtle emotions by different positions of ears, lips and tail. There are 11 postures of the tail expressing things like self-confidence, lack of tension, depression, defensiveness, active submission etc. This is a complex system! Suppose there were a thousand different emotion wolves could express in this way. Do they have language similar to humans? If not, why not?
- NO No: emotion does not have a grammar or syntax, or a linear aspect as language does. It is not analytic -- it does not break down concepts into smaller pieces for combination and re-combination in different forms.
- emotion is something we use to communicate key experiences with others. We do this through many non-linguistic means, including facial expression, touch, and tone
- but forcing emotion to fit into a linear, time-sequenced, grammatical linguistic format betrays the quality of the emotional experience itself, which is why linguistic names for emotions never quite capture them