In the third and final part of our series on language we consider the philosophical question: Do we need language to think? This question is often articulated as the Sapir Whorf hypothesis. We examine the question from its historical perspective, Boas, Sapir and Whorf's anthropological investigations, Lenneberg's formulation of a strong and weak version of the hypothesis, the relationship between language and cognition, what we've learned from Piaget's study of childhood development, how bilingualism and translatability inform thought and how this leads us to our old friend, culture. Spoiler alert: the conclusion is unsatisfying (at least to me), but we still uncover some interesting aspects of human cognition and language along the way.
The Here and Now Podcast Language Series
Linguistic relativity - Wikipedia
Wilhelm von Humboldt - Wikipedia
Franz Boas - Wikipedia
Edward Sapir - Wikipedia
Benjamin Lee Whorf - Wikipedia
The Language Animal - Charles Taylor
Change of language, change of personality? – Psychology Today
20 words that don’t exist in English but really should - Insider
Five ways of learning how to talk about events – Berman & Slobin
Frog, where are you?
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