The more a poem evokes vivid sensory imagery, the more we like it.
'G-g-g-g-g-ood morning' is a daily obstacle for people who stutter. However, so far, not much is known about the causes of persistent developmental stuttering, which is the most frequent speech disorder. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Leipzig, have recently discovered that a hyperactive network in the right frontal part of the brain plays a crucial role in this deficit. It inhibits speech movement planning and execution, thereby interrupting the flow of speech.
One of the world's 7,000 languages vanishes every other week, and half might not survive the 21st century, experts say. To preserve as much linguistic diversity as possible in the face of this threat, McGill University scientists are proposing to borrow a leaf from conservation biology by using language trees to help guide efforts to preserve linguistic diversity.
The Chachapoyas region was conquered by the Inca Empire in the late 15th century. Inca oral histories, written down after the Spanish conquest, claim that the native population was forcibly resettled out of Chachapoyas and dispersed across the Inca Empire. However, a new study in Scientific Reports uses genetic evidence to reveal that despite Inca conquest, the population of Chachapoyas has remained genetically distinct, and not assimilated with that of the Inca heartland.
Vocoded speech, or distorted speech that imitates voice transduction by a cochlear implant, is used throughout acoustic and auditory research to explore speech comprehension under various conditions. Researchers evaluated whether musicians had an advantage in understanding and reciting degraded speech as compared to nonmusicians, and they will present their work on the effect of musical experience on the ability to understand vocoded speech at the 174th ASA Meeting, Dec. 4-8, 2017.
Listening requires sensitive hearing and the ability to process information into cohesive meaning. Add everyday background noise and constant interruptions, and the ability to comprehend what is heard becomes that much more difficult. Audiology researchers at Auburn University have found that in such demanding environments, both children and adults depend more on their right ear for processing and retaining what they hear. They will present their work at the 174th ASA Meeting, Dec. 4-8.
The acoustics of political speech are known to be a powerful influencer of voter preferences, but vocal disorders can change the qualities of a person's speech, and voice scientists have found that this alters politicians' perceived charisma. The researchers examined two cases of politicians with vocal disorders -- Umberto Bossi and Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva -- and will present the findings at the 174th ASA Meeting, Dec. 4-8, 2017, in New Orleans, La.
Infants raised in homes where they hear a single language, but spoken with different accents, recognize words dramatically differently at about 12 months of age than their age-matched peers exposed to little variation in accent, according to a University at Buffalo expert in language development. The findings point to the importance of considering the effects of multiple accents when studying speech development and suggest that monolingual infants shouldn't be viewed as a single group.
Storytelling promoted cooperation in hunter-gatherers prior to the advent of organized religion, a new UCL study reveals.
For years, researchers have been interested in the similarities seen across human languages. New University of Arizona research suggests that those similarities may stem from the brain's preference for efficient information processing.