human action and perception. In evolution it gave us unique capacities
This distributed view challenges the assumption that language-behaviour
depends on a language faculty. In such approaches, the ‘use’
of language is assumed to centre on what an individual or brain
allegedly knows. Debate thus pits theories that posit disembodied
cognitivism against ones which, rejecting formalism, invoke cognitive embodiment.
While one group focus on manipulating and processing forms, the
other traces linguistic knowledge to an embodied mind. In both
cases a single brain or person is the locus of linguistic control.
The distributed language group reject all forms of cognitive
Language is distributed.
Given radical heterogeneity, it spreads across bodies in time,
and space. It is merely constrained by the ‘languages’
which the centralist invokes to explain acts of utterance and
interpretations. Thus we prioritise dialogue and how humans behave.
What we do based in biomechanical co-ordination. This is first-order
language or languaging.
During embodied communication and cognition, context is used to
constrain bodily co-ordination. Once skilled with first-order
language, utterances and interpretations can be used to link experience,
events and expectations. Bodies, circumstances and codifications
interact while drawing on a history of speech and writing. Verbal
patterns are thus viewed as second-order
cultural entities. While they resemble material artefacts,
their valued constraints depend on historically-derived norms.
By exploring linguistic
heterogeneity, we aim to transform
the language sciences. We ask how language integrates dynamics
that use biological, lived and historical time. Equally, we ask
how human expression regulates the actions that promote functional
reorganization of the brain. In a biocultural world, we hypothesise,
languaging enables biological
individuals (babies) to self-organize as persons.