Robert C. Berwick – Why Only Us: The Origin of Human Language

  • Video
  • 56 minutes
  • Level: high school and above

Robert C. Berwick, Professor of Computational Linguistics and Computer Science and Engineering, jointly with Brain and Cognitive Sciences (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), discusses the rapid and mysterious appearance of language and rationality in Homo Sapiens, and only in Homo Sapiens. This talk was given at the inaugural conference of the Society of Catholic Scientists. Berwick also contrasts the language of Homo Sapiens (that is, human beings) with the communications of animals. Berwick notes that, while some animals can be quite smart, research shows that there is a large and clear distinction between animals and humans, even in those cases where animals have been taught human sign language.

Click here for an article from Our Sunday Visitor entitled “Catholic scientists discuss faith’s role in work”, on the first conference of the Society of Catholic Scientists—“Origins”—held April 21-23, 2017 in Chicago.

Click here for the Society of Catholic Scientists “Origins” conference page.