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Primal emotions and cultural evolution of language:

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Abstract

Biological evidence for evolved-adaptive (genetically-selected) modularity forhuman brain language processing is almost nonexistent. The historical emergenceof human brain language capacity may wholly reflect socio-cultural learning,permitted by evolved cortical expansions and motivated by bottom-up affectivestates. Abundant evidence supports the existence of many genetically encodedprimary-process emotional systems in deep subcortical brain regions that governwide-ranging attentional and motivational states that guide the emergence ofdiverse cognitive processes including language. The fundamental affective states ofthe brain impact secondary-process learning and memory mechanisms throughvarious affectively rich basal-ganglia of the brain. Once language is acquiredculturally, emotional states continue to control tertiary-process cognitive elaborationsof thinking and language processing, operating through recently evolvedneocortical expansions, some unique to humans, which have no more intrinsiccapacity for consciousness in humans than in other animals.

References

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