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Recent studies of vocal development in infants have shed new light on old questions of how the speech capacity is founded and how it may have evolved in the human species. Vocalizations in the very first months of life appear to provide previously unrecognized clues to the earliest steps in the process by which language came to exist and the processes by which communicative disorders arise. Perhaps the most interesting sounds made by infants are the uniquely human 'protophones' (loosely, 'babbling'), the precursors to speech. Kimbrough Oller argues that these are most profitably interpreted in the context of a new infrastructural model of speech. The model details the manner in which well-formed speech units are constructed, and it reveals how infant vocalizations mature through the first months of life by increasingly adhering to the rules of well-formed speech. He lays out many advantages of an infrastructural approach. Infrastructural interpretation illuminates the significance of vocal stages, and highlights clinically significant deviations, such as the previously unnoticed delays in vocal development that occur in deaf infants. An infrastructural approach also specifies potential paths of evolution for vocal communicative systems. Infrastructural properties and principles of potential communicative systems prove to be organized according to a natural logic--some properties and principles naturally presuppose others. Consequently some paths of evolution are likely while others can be ruled out. An infrastructural analysis also provides a stable basis for comparisons across species, comparisons that show how human vocal capabilities outstrip those of their primate relatives even during the first months of human infancy. The Emergence of the Speech Capacity will challenge psychologists, linguists, speech pathologists, and primatologists alike to rethink the ways they categorize and describe communication. Oller's infraphonological model permits provocative reconceptualizations of the ways infant vocalizations progress systematically toward speech, insightful comparisons between speech and the vocal systems of other species, and fruitful speculations about the origins of language.
Like speech, the species-specific vocalizations or calls of non-human primates mediate social interactions, convey important emotional information, and in some cases refer to objects and events in the caller's environment. These functional similarities suggest that the selective pressures which shaped primate vocal communication are similar to those that influenced the evolution of human speech. As such, investigating the perception and production of vocalizations in extant non-human primates provides one avenue for understanding the neural mechanisms of speech and for illuminating the substrates underlying the evolution of human language. Primate Audition: Ethology and Neurobiology is the first book to bridge the epistemological gap between primate ethologists and auditory neurobiologists. It brings together the knowledge of world experts on different aspects of primate auditory function. Leading ethologists, comparative psychologists, and neuroscientists who have developed new experimental approaches apply their methods to a variety of issues dealing with primate vocal behavior and the neurobiology of the primate auditory system. With the advent of new signal processing techniques and the exponential growth in our knowledge of primate behavior, the time has arrived for a neurobiological investigation of the primate auditory system based on principles derived from ethology. The synthesis of ethological and neurobiological approaches to primate vocal behavior presented in Primate Audition: Ethology and Neurobiology is likely to yield the richest understanding of the acoustic and neural bases of primate audition and possibly shed light on the evolutionary precursors to speech.
This book sets a high standard for rigor and scientific approach to the study of bilingualism and provides new insights regarding the critical issues of theory and practice, including the interdependence of linguistic knowledge in bilinguals, the role of socioeconomic status, the effect of different language usage patterns in the home, and the role of schooling by single-language immersion as opposed to systematic training in both home and target languages. The rich landscape of outcomes reported in the volume will provide a frame for interpretation and understanding of effects of bilingualism for years to come.
This book explores the distinction between the public and the private, with special concern for the nature of the individual's attachment to public institutions and ideals.
In a single volume, The Mobile Communications Handbook 2nd. Edition covers the entire field - from principles of analog and digital communications to cordless telephones, wireless local area networks (LANs), and international technology standards. The amazing scope of the handbook ensures that it will be the primary reference for every aspect of mobile communications.
Techniques in Speech Acoustics provides an introduction to the acoustic analysis and characteristics of speech sounds. The first part of the book covers aspects of the source-filter decomposition of speech, spectrographic analysis, the acoustic theory of speech production and acoustic phonetic cues. The second part is based on computational techniques for analysing the acoustic speech signal including digital time and frequency analyses, formant synthesis, and the linear predictive coding of speech. There is also an introductory chapter on the classification of acoustic speech signals which is relevant to aspects of automatic speech and talker recognition. The book intended for use as teaching materials on undergraduate and postgraduate speech acoustics and experimental phonetics courses; also aimed at researchers from phonetics, linguistics, computer science, psychology and engineering who wish to gain an understanding of the basis of speech acoustics and its application to fields such as speech synthesis and automatic speech recognition.

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