The Origin of Language

This is a fascinating article that merits a close read by people on both sides of the debate. During my studies for my psychology degree, we looked at numerous cases of how language is something that humans cannot learn on their own. It has to involve a teacher and interactions with other humans. Without those, language will not develop.

Here is an excerpt from the introduction. I encourage you to check out the full article here.

What events transpired that have allowed humans to speak, while animals remain silent?  If we are to believe the evolutionary teaching currently taking place in colleges and universities around the world, speech evolved as a natural process over time.  Yet no one is quite sure how, and there are no known animals that are in a transition phase from non-speaking to speaking.  In fact, in the Atlas of Languages, this remarkable admission can be found:  ‘No languageless community has ever been found’.[5] This represents no small problem for evolution.

In fact, the origin of speech and language (along with the development of sex and reproduction) remains one of the most significant hurdles in evolutionary theory, even in the twenty-first century.  In an effort “make the problem go away,” some evolutionists have chosen not to even address the problem.  Jean Aitchison noted:

‘In 1866, a ban on the topic was incorporated into the founding statutes of the Linguistic Society of Paris, perhaps the foremost academic linguistic institution of the time: ‘The Society does not accept papers on either the origin of language or the invention of a universal language.’[6]

That is an amazing (albeit inadvertent) admission of defeat, especially coming from a group of such eminent scientists, researchers, and scholars.  While remaining quiet worked well for a while, evolutionists now realize that they need a materialistic answer for this problem.

The truth of the matter is, however, that the origin of human languages can be discerned—but not via the theory of evolution.


3 thoughts on “The Origin of Language

  1. Of course, the extremely simple and obvious response is that lack of knowledge about a proposed mechanism is not proof that such a mechanism doesn’t exist, and while this is an open question in evolution, it’s *far* from representing any kind of challenge to the fundamentals of evolution. I mean, we KNOW things evolve, this is a simple, undeniable fact. The only remaining questions are about the details of how they do it.

    I shouldn’t even have to mention that this does absolutely nothing to advance the hypothesis of intelligent design as it is involving evolution and not intelligent design. Only a simple mind caught up in false dichotomies would think you can prove one idea by disproving a completely different idea. I trust you’re smarter than that.

    And another of course is that we obviously do know of many animals that use language to communicate about food sources, dangers, and social needs. They’re not as complex as our language, but that’s to be expected – we’re smarter.

    I just don’t see how the author of that article can overlook some very glaring omissions. Wait, yes I do. The author was writing propaganda instead of a legitimate academic paper. The whole thing can be summed up here – “The truth of the matter is, however, that the origin of human languages can be discerned—but not via the theory of evolution.” This is simply an argument from personal ignorance/incredulity. The author does not see how it’s possible, therefore makes the assertion that it is impossible. We both know this is stupidity, right? There are lots of people who have no idea how a car works, but it doesn’t change the fact that they drive one around every day.

  2. “there are no known animals that are in a transition phase from non-speaking to speaking.”

    I just don’t know how anyone can read this statement and not immediately cast doubt on the legitimacy of the entire article. I mean, we experience animals using vocalized communications on a daily if not hourly basis. If people would think with their heads instead of automatically embracing something that seems to confirm their emotional desires, articles like this would never make it to print.

  3. Jason, you present no evidence other than your own opinion. The article I linked to has cited a good number of proponents of evolution who cannot explain the origin of language.

    The statement that the paper is propaganda is based on your belief that Scripture and science are not compatible. You work from that premise, the authors of the paper work from another. That does not make what they are doing propaganda.

    The article also explicitly states that animals do use language, but it’s complexity comes nowhere close to that of human language, nor has an animal been able to learn language in a capacity that approaches a humans.

    Also, if you have studied language from a developmental and psychological perspective it opens up a whole new can of worms that presents significant challenges to evolution.

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