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The Correct Language: Tojolabal (Routledge Library Editions: Linguistics)

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  • ISBN-13: 9780415727457
  • Publisher: Routledge
  • Release Date: Dec 06, 2013
  • Pages: 424 pages
  • Dimensions: 0.94 x 9.21 x 6.14 inches


Definitions of language cluster around two non-contradictory views: one that language is a shared code, a social entity, and the other that language is the knowledge that enables a native speaker to produce and understand speech. In examining the language and culture of the Tojolabal (Mayan) Indians of Mexico, this book argues that language is a cognitive system, as is culture, of which language is but a part. The author is most interested in the interfaces between language and social phenomena and between language and other systems of culture, and demonstrates that research on the dialectic between language and social context, and that between language and other systems of culture, leads to fruitful generalizations about the nature of language as a human capacity.

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