The Gift of Gab
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The term coined as the talent or capacity of talking readily, fluently and persuasively or convincingly is called “the Gift of Gab” which is more known to be and idiom in the English language meaning to chatter or speak rapidly. Also, the word ‘gab’ in this term simply means ‘to talk’ and it is the root word of ‘gabble’ meaning, to babble or jabber with speech.
The skill of communicating has always been related to language that is defined as a mean of expression and communication. Considering different topics and concerns on language, it has been an issue among species and this is what has been discussed on the articles as well as the evolutionary and biological perspective of it.
There is a big difference among humans and animals; humans can talk or speak and animals cannot though they can make different sounds and cries. Through our language, we are able to work together on a task, lets us create and convey different literatures, create and produce new technologies and educate. Hence, language is a powerful thing that also makes us rational or critical thinkers to be superior among all living things in our planet (Cartmill, 1998).
Several years ago, it can be assumed that people are already talking in a sense that they already built different tools and tokens of art like pottery, wood carvings, wall writings etc. Therefore, these tokens of art gave way on considering such events as high forms of behavior.
Paleontologists also observed speech abilities relating to fossil bones, specifically the skull; since the brain is most important organ for language. In this way, they searched for different marks that have been left by the brain on the inner surfaces of the fossilized skulls. They focused on the marks left by speech areas of the brain which is believed that when damaged, it can impair the ability of an individual to talk or understand language.
Unfortunately, findings on such evidences were uncertain because the fit of the brain in the skull is quite loose among humans and other mammals (Cartmill, 1998). In addition, brain functions on language is scattered out on different parts of it and not only located tightly on a specific part of the brain.
From the skull to the brain, different organs were also observed with regards to speech like the tongue and throat. Some researchers focused on the measurement of jaws as well as the skulls of early hominids in order to reconstruct vocal tracts’ shapes and application of acoustics laws in order to see whether these species are capable of talking. And so, the tongue movements were believed to produce sounds and speech as well.
Studies showed that some lines in the Homo species did not have any modern vocal organs that could make them talk. The Neanderthals were believed to have never develop a range of vowels in their speech (if ever they had one) making it harder to recognize and comprehend than the modern humans’ speech. Hence, it seems that being understood was not really important to them and so, this may imply that speech or any vocal communication was not considered to be the center of their lives (Cartmill, 1998).
The origin of human language has been greatly studied and was not even found out to be parallel to that of animal communication because of irregular properties that they have.
It was also pointed out that humans were able to talk through the same way like that of behavior reinforcement wherein, children are either punished or rewarded when they use a word or form sentences. In this aspect of language, it is shown that language is also concern with the arrangement or order of words (i.e., syntax and grammar).
And so, this order of words makes humans understand what other humans try to convey because of similar structures of their language. An example of this is when people do transactions over things and
Lastly, the article stated that, it may wrong for some given details but the outlines given have solved many puzzles on language, given much account on the differences of humans to any other living organisms and that the origin of language discussed in the article suggests that humans are profound beings that can be rooted from different perspectives in psychology and biology.
The article is a good viewpoint to think of not only because of the data and outcomes that showed but most importantly the question that could lead people, “Where did language come from?” or any other matter that leads to evolution of language. It is also good to think on the formation of language across time and among cultures. But on the contrary, the article did not quite expound on what language means, specifically spoken language or talking, when it was referred to be the ability to communicate because animals also communicate with their kind, it’s just that they convey it in a different manner.
In everyday experience, we talk with people and chat over phone calls. These are examples on how we practice our own language. The way we interact with our family and friends, also shows how we use spoken language whether to share stories, ideas, argue in conflicts and make transactions out of things.
Thus, language can be said to be mutual and commonly a part of our daily lives whether it is in speech or in action and it has been a mean of communication and how humans express and/or convey their emotions.
Cartmill, M. (1998). The Gift of Gab. Discover. Retrieved June 29, 2007 from http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1511/is_11_19/ai_57564238/pg_1.