Center for Mind, Brain, and Culture

Lunch | Bryan Gick | Embodying Speech

Episode Summary

Bryan Gick | Embodying Speech

Episode Notes

All biological sounds originate with body movements. However, theories of speech production and perception have not generally been grounded in models of how bodies move. In this talk, I will argue that the body has been a crucial missing link in theories of speech, and will show how a deeper – and less culturally biased – understanding of the body’s role in speech, gained partly through advances in biomechanical simulation, can help us to make sense of how sounds are produced for communication. I will show how this framework sheds light on such wide-ranging issues as: why languages universally use similar movement inventories, how movement variation becomes speech variation and sound change, links between speech and non-speech functions such as digestion, respiration and emotion expression, whether spoken and signed language follow similar principles, the role of sensory feedback in speech, and how innate infant behaviors bootstrap speech.