This course cross-listed with Anthropology 1060-01 and Linguistics 1060-01
Language is a uniquely human achievement, a development that sets us apart from other animals. It is a powerful tool that we use during our every waking hour (and during much of our sleep). Still, we rarely stop to appreciate the complex role it plays in our everyday life. This course explores language from a variety of perspectives. We will consider the structure of language, looking at how sounds combine to form words and how words combine to form sentences. To gain a sense of the diversity of linguistic structures, we will consider examples from a variety of the world’s languages. Students will learn to analyze linguistic data from a broad range of languages and to think critically about what human language is, how it is learned, and how it communicates meaning.