Phylogenetic Processes in Verbal Language Imitation

  • Roland G. Tharp
  • Caleb E. S. Burns
Part of the Springer Series in Language and Communication book series (SSLAN, volume 24)


Phylogenesis, culturogenesis, ontogenesis, and microgenesis all contribute to human phenomena. A complete account of the smallest grain of language behavior would require consideration of the social and historical forces affecting language and imitation, the individual ontogenetic variables in language development as they are expressed in imitation, and the microgenetic processes of rapid, small-unit acquisition of language as it is mediated by modeling and imitating.


Language Acquisition Killer Whale Vocal Behavior Absolute Pitch Early Language Development 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Andrew, R.J. (1962) Evolution of intelligence and vocal mimicking. Science, 137, 585–589.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Banks, M.S., Aslin, R.N., & Letson, R.D. (1975). Sensitive period for the development of human binocular vision. Science, 190, 675–677.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bates, E., Shore, C., Bretherton, I., & McNew, S. (1983). Names, gestures, and objects: Symbolization in infancy and aphasia. In K.E. Nelson (Ed.), Children’s language (Vol. 4, pp. 59–123). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  4. Bjorklund, D.F. (1987). A note on neonatal imitation. Developmental Review, 7, 86–92.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bloom, K. (1977a). Operant baseline procedures suppress infant social behavior. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 23, 28–132.Google Scholar
  6. Bloom, K. (1977b). Patterning of infant vocal behavior. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 23, 367–377.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bloom, K. (1979). Evaluation of infant vocal conditioning. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 27, 60–70.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Bolk, L. (1926). Das Problem der Menschwerdung. Jena: Gustav Fischer.Google Scholar
  9. Caldwell, D.K., & Caldwell, M.C. (1972). Vocal mimicry in the whistle mode in the Atlantic bottle-nosed dolphin. Cetology, 9, 1–8.Google Scholar
  10. Campbell, J. (1982). Grammatical man: Information, entropy, language and life. New York: Simon & Schuster.Google Scholar
  11. Clarke-Stewart, A., Friedman, S., & Koch, J. (1985). Child development. New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  12. Crozier, J.B., Robinson, E.A., & Ewing, V. (1976/1977). [Etiology of absolute pitch.] Bulliten de Psychologie, 30, 792–803.Google Scholar
  13. De Beer, G. (1958). Embryos and ancestors. Oxford: Clarendon Press.Google Scholar
  14. deVilliers, P.A., & deVilliers, J.G. (1978). Language acquisition. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  15. Epstein, R. (1984). Spontaneous and deferred imitation in the pigeon. Behavioural Processes,9, 347–354.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Ford, J.K.B., & Fisher, D. (1982). Killer whale (orcinus orca) dialects as an indicator of stocks in British Columbia. Reports of the International Whaling Commision, 32, 671–679.Google Scholar
  17. Genesee, F. (1981). A comparison of early and late second language learning. Canadian Journal of Behavioral Science, 13(2), 115–128.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Gish, S.L. (1979). Quantitative analysis of two-way acoustic communication between captive Atlantic bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus Montague). Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of California at Santa Cruz.Google Scholar
  19. Gould, S.J. (1977a). Evern since Darwin:Reflections in natural history. New York: Norton.Google Scholar
  20. Gould, S.J. (1977b). Ontogeny and phylogeny. Cambridge, MA: Belknap Press.Google Scholar
  21. Green, S. (1975). Dialects in Japanese monkeys: Vocal learning and cultural transmission of locale-specific vocal behavior? Zeitschrift fur Tierpsychologie, 38, 304–314.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Haimoff, E.H. (1981). Video analysis of siamang (Hylobates syndactylus) songs. Behav-iour, 76, 128–151.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Hamm, M., Russell, M., & Koepke, J. (1979, March). Neonatal imitation? Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, San Francisco, CA.Google Scholar
  24. Harris, P.L. (1983). Infant cognition. In P.H. Mussen (Ed.), Handbook of child psychology (4th ed.): Vol. 2. Infancy & developmental psychobiology (pp. 689–782). New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  25. Harrison, G., & Weiner, J. (1964). Human evolution. In G. Harrison, J. Weiner, J. Tanner, & N. Barnicot (Eds.), Human biology: An introduction to human evolution, variation, and growth. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  26. Harste, J.C., Woodward, V.A., and Burke, C.L. (1984). Language stories & literacy lessons. Portsmouth, NH: Heinemann Educational Books.Google Scholar
  27. Hayes, L.A., & Watson, J.S. (1981). Neonatal imitation: Fact or artifact? Developmental Psychology,17, 655–660.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Herman, L.H. (1980). Cognitive characteristics of dolphins. In L.M. Herman (Ed.), Cetacean behavior: Mechanisms and functions (pp. 363–429). New York: WileyInterscience.Google Scholar
  29. Herman, L.M., & Tavolga, W.N. (1980). The communication systems of cetaceans. In L.M. Herman (Ed.), Cetacean behavior: Mechanisms and functions (pp. 149–209). New York: Wiley-Interscience.Google Scholar
  30. Herrnstein, R.J. (1977). The evolution of behaviorism. American Psychologist,32, 593–603.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Hill, J.H. (1974). Possible continuity theories of language. Language, 50, 134–150.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Hoden, A., Snowdon, C.T., & Soini, P. (1981). Subspecific variation in the long calls of the tamarin, Saguinus fuscicollis. A. Tierpscyhol., 57, 97–110.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Kaye, K. (1982). The mental and social life of babies: How parents create persons. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  34. Kroodsma, D.E., & Miller, E.H. (Eds.). (1982). Acoustic communication in birds. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  35. Lane, H.L. (1976). The wild boy of Aveyron. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  36. Lenneberg, E. (1967). Biological foundations of language. New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  37. Lieberman, P. (1968). Primate vocalizations and human linguistic ability. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 44, 1574–1594.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Lieberman, P. (1984). The biology and evolution of language. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  39. McKenzie, B., & Over, R. (1983). Young infants fail to imitate facial and manual gestures. Infant Behavior and Development, 6(1), 85–95.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Meltzoff, A.N., & Moore, M.K. (1977). Imitation of facial and manual gestures by human neonates. Science, 198, 75–78.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Menyuk, P. (1971). The acquisition and development of language. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  42. Menyuk, P. (1977). Language and maturation. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  43. Michael, J.L. (1984). Verbal behavior. Journal of the Experimental Analysis of Behavior, 42,363–376.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Montagu, A. (1961). Neonatal and infant maturity in man. Journal of the American Medical Association, 178(1), 56–57.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Morse, P. (1974). Infant speech perception: A preliminary model and review of the litera-ture. In R. Schiefelbusch & L. Lloyd (Eds.). Language perspectives: Acquisition, retardation and intervention (pp. 19–54). Baltimore, MD: University Park Press.Google Scholar
  46. Mussen, P.H. (1983). Handbook of child psychology (4th ed.). New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  47. Nakazima, S. (1962). A comparative study of the speech developments of Japanese and American English in childhood. Studia Phonologica, 2, 27–39.Google Scholar
  48. Netsell, R. (1986). A neurobiologic view of speech production and the dysarthrias. San Diego, CA: College-Hill Press.Google Scholar
  49. Newman, J.D., & Symmes, D. (1982). Inheritance and experience in the acquisition of primate acoustic behavior. In D.T. Snowden, C.H. Brown, & M.F. Peterson (Eds.), Primate communication. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  50. Nottebohm, E. (1972). The origins of vocal learning. American Naturalist, 106, 116–140.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Olson, G.M., & Sherman, T. (1983). Attention, learning and memory in infants. In P.H. Mussen (Ed.). Handbook of child psychology. Vol 2: Infancy and developmental psychobiology (pp. 1001–1080). New York: Wiley.Google Scholar
  52. Oppenheim, R.W. (1981). Ontogenetic adaptations and retrogressive processes in the development of the nervous system and behaviour: A neuroembryological perspective. In K.J. Connolly & H.F.R. Prechtl (Eds.), Maturation and development: Biological and psychological perspectives. Philadelphia, PA: International Medical Publications.Google Scholar
  53. Oyama, S. (1976). A sensitive period for the acquisition of a nonnative phonological system. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 5, 261–283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Patkowski, M. (1980). The sensitive period for the acquisition of syntax in a second language. Language Learning, 30(2), 449–472.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Piaget, J. (1962). Play, dreams,and imitation in childhood. New York: Norton.Google Scholar
  56. Reger, Z. (1986). The functions of imitation in child language. Applied Psycholinguistics,7, 323–352.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Richards, D.G., Wolz, J.P., & Herman, L.M. (1984). Vocal mimicry of computer-generated sounds and vocal labeling of objects by a bottlenosed dolphin, Tursiops truncatus. Journal of Comparative Psychology, 98, 10–28.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Rondal, J.A. (1985). Adult-child interaction and the process of language acquisition. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
  59. Routh, D.K. (1969). Conditioning of vocal response differentiation in infants. Developmental Psychology,1, 219–226.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Seliger, H., Krashen, S., & Ladefoged, P. (1975). Maturational constraints in the acquisition of second language accent. Language Sciences, 36, 20–22.Google Scholar
  61. Seyfarth, R.M., & Cheney, D.L. (1982). How monkeys see the world: A review of recent research on East African vervet monkeys. In C.T. Snowden, C.H. Brown, & M.R. Petersen (Eds.), Primate communication. New York: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  62. Skinner, B.F. (1957). Verbal behavior. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  63. Skinner, B.F. (1961). The technology of teaching. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts.Google Scholar
  64. Skinner, B.F. (1966). The phylogeny and ontogeny of behavior. Science, 153, 1205–1213.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Skinner, B.F. (1974). About behaviorism. New York: Knopf.Google Scholar
  66. Skinner, B.F. (1977). Herrnstein and the evolution of behaviorism. American Psychologist,32, 1006–1012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Skinner, B.F. (1980). Notebooks. (Edited by R. Epstein). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.Google Scholar
  68. Skinner, B.F. (1983). A matter of consequences. New York: Knopf.Google Scholar
  69. Snow, C.E. (1983). Saying it again: The role of expanded and deferred imitations in language acquisition. In K.E. Nelson (Ed.), Children’s language (Vol. 4, pp. 29–58). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  70. Snowden, C.T. (1983). Ethology, comparative psychology, and animal behavior. Annual Review of Psychology, 34, 63–94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Tahta, S., Wood, M., & Lowenthal, K. (1981). Age changes in the ability to replicate foreign pronunciation and intonation. Language and Speech, 24(4), 363–372.Google Scholar
  72. Tharp, R.G. (1987, August). Culture, cognition & education: A culturogenetic analysis of the wholistic complex. A paper presented at the conference of the Institute on Literacy and Learning, University of California at Santa Barbara.Google Scholar
  73. Thorpe, W.H., & North, M.E.W. (1965). Origin and significance of the power of vocal imitation: With special reference to the antiphonal singing of birds. Nature, 208, 219–222.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. Trevarthen, C. (1983). Development of the cerebral mechanisms for language. In U. Kirk, (Ed.) Neuropsychology of language, reading, and spelling. New York: Academic Press.Google Scholar
  75. Vaughan, M.E., & Michael, J.L. (1982). Automatic reinforcement: An important but ignored concept. Behaviorism, 10, 217–227.Google Scholar
  76. Wahler, R.G. (1969). Infant social development: Some experimental analyses of an infant-mother interaction during the first year of life. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 7, 101–113.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. Waite, L.H. (1979, March). Early imitation with several models: An example of socio-cognitive and socio-affective development. Paper presented at the Biennial Meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development, San Francisco, CA.Google Scholar
  78. Ward, W.D. (1963). Absolute pitch: Part II. Sound, 2(4), 33–41.Google Scholar
  79. Werker, J.F., & Tees, R.C. (1983). Developmental changes across childhood in the percep-tion of non-native speech sounds. Canadian Journal of Psychology, 37, 278–286.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. White, S., Tharp, R.G., Jordan, C., and Vogt, L. (in press). Cultural patterns of cognition reflected in the questioning styles of Anglo and Navajo teachers. In D. Topping, V. Kobayshi, & D.C. Crowell (Eds.). Thinking: The Third International Conference. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Roland G. Tharp
  • Caleb E. S. Burns

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations