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26 April 2006 @ 02:13 pm
Songbirds May Be Able to Learn Grammar

< quote >
Yet what they learned may shake up the field of linguistics.

While many animals can roar, sing, grunt or otherwise make noise, linguists have contended for years that the key to distinguishing language skills goes back to our elementary school teachers and basic grammar. Sentences that contain an explanatory clause are something that humans can recognize, but not animals, researchers figured.
< /quote >

so HA! for years i have contended that the entire approach that linguists have had as a root is wrong and whats worse is rooted in a belief system based out of a stupid assumption. the assumption is something that has unfortunately taken root in western science - the idea that humans are 'special', that humans are 'above' other animals, that humans are 'lords of their domains'. (i suspect that this root though is an obvious psychological one, has been fostered and strengthened via particular religious systems)

this self-importance, this assumption that we humans are more important and above other things is what it is - an assumption. any credible scientific subject must first root out all assumptions and place them on the table. once on the table the assumptions that are driven by ego must be removed. a study of a subject matter should never be beholden to the ego, but rather driven by the want and need to understand and reflect.

it was this mistake that the linguists have had for so long is what drove me immediately away from the subject when i first encountered it. anything with such a fundamental problem will eventually fall apart...