This chapter discusses society in relation to language, undoubtedly the one single phenomenon that is preferentially adduced to explain the specific nature of human societies. In my estimation, this type of thinking puts the cart before the horse. I have argued a similar point many years ago in discussing the results of intensive research of deaf children (Furth, 1966). Whereas there I had to establish human logic as prior to the logical use of language, I argue here that societal relations must be presupposed and have to be present in the child’s mind prior to language to make societal language intelligible in the first place. Study 6 is intended to provide evidence for this view from a developmental constructivist perspective.
KeywordsRelated Clause American Sign Language Deaf Child Pretend Play Transitive Verb
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