Language Instinct-it’s not just the title of the book I have started reading.

It’s something that invigorates all of my senses…..I was having lunch with someone I did not know at all at Las Manitas. She was interviewing me for a Spanish teacher position. As we were discussing our experiences with language she mentioned a book called, Language Instinct by Steven Pinker. I was intrigued simply by her brief summary of the book. In a nutshell, the writer of the book claims that “language” is something we all possess, it’s an innate characteristic amongst humans. One of the over-arching questions I have as I am delving into the first chapter is, “What about those individuals who can’t speak?” I am thinking of someone I know who cannot utter a word. She makes sounds, but has never uttered a word. Maybe Pinker’s definition of “language” is a very broad one. Maybe it’s anyone that can make a sound, even if its a single phoneme coming out of their mouth. If that’s true then our instincts have varying strengths…

*I declined the teaching position. My other instinct was telling me to venture towards something else or maybe something less time consuming.

Originally published post on 9/6/2008

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