Article published in:Culture – Language – Cognition
Edited by Marcelo Dascal †
[Pragmatics & Cognition 20:2] 2012
► pp. 295–316
Language: Between cognition, communication and culture
Everett’s main claim is that language is a “cultural tool”, created by hominids for communication and social cohesion. I examine the meaning of the expression “cultural tool” in terms of the influence of language on culture (i.e. the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis) or of the influence of culture on language (Everett’s hypothesis). I show that these hypotheses are not well-supported by evidence and that language and languages, rather than being “cultural tools” as wholes are rather collections of tools used in different language games, some cultural or social, some cognitive. I conclude that the coincidence between language and culture is due to the fact that both originate from human nature.
Keywords: language, cultural tool, ontological dependence, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, culture, Everett’s hypothesis, subitization, supervenience, Cognitive tool
Published online: 18 February 2013
Cited by 6 other publications
Everett, Daniel L.
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Martins, Maurício de Jesus Dias, Zarja Muršič, Jinook Oh & W. Tecumseh Fitch
Martins, Maurício Dias, Sabine Laaha, Eva Maria Freiberger, Soonja Choi & W. Tecumseh Fitch
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