Cognitive linguistics

I've long been interested in this topic. How exactly is our capacity to speak related to our capacity to think?  Does speaking a particular language, or languages affect what types of thoughts are possible?  Some days I wish I didn't have to work and could just go back to school for a long, long seems that there are people who are interested in the same thing and working on interesting research out there now.

Comments (2)

  1. Kris says:

    This has been a question that has nagged me for a long time – Does language affect thinking, comprehension and broadening the emotional horizons of an individual? And I can attest to the fact that it does. I am not a native English speaker and if I had just spoken in my vernacular I would have been incapable of certain thoughts, which today come naturally to me.  But I never bothered searching on the web to see if there is research being conducted in these realms. It is more a personal interospection that anything else….

  2. Larry says:

    Language is created to transfer thoughts.  So, it’s safe to say it influences thoughts.  The link below references a tribe that does not have higher numbers and therefore does not think well with higher numbers.  However, don’t throw out the cultural influence of not needing to use higher numbers.

    So, is it possible to talk about language influence on thinking without cultural bias?  Well, kinda.  In ancient times, when there was a myriad of programming languages, like Assembler, Basic, Pascal, FORTRAN, and COBOL, it was always possible to tell the programming language a person first learned, no matter which language they used later.  They used the structures and methods from their first language to solve problems with the new language.  Their thought patterns had been shaped by a language.

Skip to main content