Mental · Social

New Nicaraguan sign language shows how language affects thought | Not Exactly Rocket Science | Discover Magazine

A cool look at language and how it shapes our thoughts in the article “New Nicaraguan sign language shows how language affects thought | Not Exactly Rocket Science | Discover Magazine.”

NSL has been a goldmine for scientists, providing an unparalleled opportunity to study the emergence of a new language. And in a new study led by Jennie Pyers from Wellesley College, it even tells us how language shapes our thought.By studying children who learned NSL at various stages of its development, Pyers has shown that the vocabulary they pick up affects the way they think. Specifically, those who learned NSL before it developed specific gestures for left and right perform more poorly on a spatial awareness test than children who grew up knowing how to sign those terms.

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