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The Story of Human Language

Von: John McWhorter,The Great Courses
Gesprochen von: John McWhorter
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    Inhaltsangabe

    Language defines us as a species, placing humans head and shoulders above even the most proficient animal communicators. But it also beguiles us with its endless mysteries, allowing us to ponder why different languages emerged, why there isn't simply a single language, how languages change over time and whether that's good or bad, and how languages die out and become extinct. Now you can explore all of these questions and more in an in-depth series of 36 lectures from one of America's leading linguists.

    You'll be witness to the development of human language, learning how a single tongue spoken 150,000 years ago evolved into the estimated 6,000 languages used around the world today and gaining an appreciation of the remarkable ways in which one language sheds light on another.

    The many fascinating topics you examine in these lectures include: the intriguing evidence that links a specific gene to the ability to use language; the specific mechanisms responsible for language change; language families and the heated debate over the first language; the phenomenon of language mixture; why some languages develop more grammatical machinery than they actually need; the famous hypothesis that says our grammars channel how we think; artificial languages, including Esperanto and sign languages for the deaf; and how word histories reflect the phenomena of language change and mixture worldwide.

    PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

    ©2004 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2004 The Great Courses

    Das sagen andere Hörer zu The Story of Human Language

    Nur Nutzer, die den Titel gehört haben, können Rezensionen abgeben.
    Gesamt
    • 5 out of 5 stars
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      224
    • 4 Sterne
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    • 3 Sterne
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    Sprecher
    • 5 out of 5 stars
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      200
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    • 3 Sterne
      6
    • 2 Sterne
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    • 1 Stern
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    Geschichte
    • 5 out of 5 stars
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    • 4 Sterne
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    • 2 Sterne
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    • 1 Stern
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    Rezensionen - mit Klick auf einen der beiden Reiter können Sie die Quelle der Rezensionen bestimmen.

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    • Gesamt
      3 out of 5 stars
    • Sprecher
      3 out of 5 stars
    • Geschichte
      3 out of 5 stars

    solid, but less scientific than hoped

    Haben Sie die Zeit genossen, in der Sie dieses Hörbuch gehört haben? Warum oder warum nicht?

    One of the qualities of this audio book is that it is very comprehensible, with a lot of redundant and repeating content, which makes it easy to follow. If you're already familiar with linguistic science this might lead to some boredom, just because of the redundancy. If you're new to the matter this might be actually helpful.

    Würden Sie The Story of Human Language Ihren Freunden empfehlen? Warum oder warum nicht?

    I'd recommend it to lay people interested in general linguistics. But you should be careful since McWhorter is not always perfectly accurate in his examples and some of the concepts are by far less accepted than presented.

    Was genau mochten Sie an der Sprecherleistung? Was hat Ihnen nicht gefallen?

    John McWhorter speaks clearly and very comprehensible even for non-native English speakers. Personally I did not like his style, but that is always a debatable aspect. His voice and cadence is very good.

    Was wäre für andere Hörer sonst noch hilfreich zu wissen, um das Hörbuch richtig einschätzen zu können?

    There are 4 chapters dedicated to the Creole language, which an accordingly interested person will find very useful. From a scientific perspective I see a lot more debatable content, which hasn't been marked as such.

    17 Leute fanden das hilfreich

    • Gesamt
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Sprecher
      2 out of 5 stars
    • Geschichte
      2 out of 5 stars

    Biased

    Since this course apparently aims at a non-linguist audience, it would be preferable to represent linguistic debates in a less biased way.

    The speaker has in some aspect non-canonical views and represents in debates (e.g. splitters vs. lumpers) predominantly his personal perspective. The hearer should be aware that this is less “the” story of human language, but rather “a” story of human language.

    6 Leute fanden das hilfreich

    • Gesamt
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Sprecher
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Geschichte
      5 out of 5 stars

    Everything you ever wanted to know about language

    Very interesting view on language. Enjoyed every bit of it. Speaker is entertaining. Very nice.

    4 Leute fanden das hilfreich

    • Gesamt
      5 out of 5 stars

    Useful and fun

    You just need to put it at x1.6. The prof speaks a bit slow, but absolutely fun

    • Gesamt
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Sprecher
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Geschichte
      5 out of 5 stars

    Best of Teaching Company

    I'm really delighted. It's packed with information & just fun at the same time.

    • Gesamt
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Sprecher
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Geschichte
      5 out of 5 stars

    Well prepared, interesting, speaker super entertai

    This was a blast! I am a biologist / neuriscientist and hated language courses in school, but I listened to some lectures twice because they were that well prepared and presented. John McWorther does not only present interesting facts and a well structured theory of the evolution of languages, he generally is fun to listen, too.

    Even complex arguments and theories are presented in a structured manor that allows the listener to follow and piece by piece understand them. These theories are then fleshed out with memorable examples that are interesting and fun to know.

    TLDR: Recommend, topic amazing, guy funny and smart

    • Gesamt
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Sprecher
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Geschichte
      5 out of 5 stars

    Fascinating

    Quite entertaining and impressive account of the diversity of languages that exist and were part of human history.

    • Gesamt
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Sprecher
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Geschichte
      5 out of 5 stars

    great history of language

    I really loved this series of lectures. While a huge lot of the course was on Indo-European languages (which makes it a lot easier for the casual listener), there was enough about very different languages and their development to be extremely fascinating. I learned a lot. Also, Prof. McWhorter shows a deep love to his subject and gives entertaining and memorable examples.

    • Gesamt
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Sprecher
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Geschichte
      5 out of 5 stars

    Fascinating

    An excellent book for an any amatuer linguist, loved every minute of it. Great stuff!

    • Gesamt
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Sprecher
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Geschichte
      5 out of 5 stars

    Awesome insights in the history of language

    I didn‘t know what to expect, but I tried anyway. Boy, am I glad I did! The lectures are very entertaining and convey so many different aspects of „language“, I never thought about. Now I can definitely say: I’m a (current German) language head😉 thank you for these hours of entertainment and learning!