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Your Brain Stores Words. But, Like, Seriously...

I'm taking English Grammar this summer and have come to the conclusion that our language is entirely too confusing, but I love it.

Today we were discussing the functions of verbs and nouns and my professor told us that we actually house them in our brain. The front, left side of the brain is its language center and it is subdivided even further. When observing brain activity during conversations with stroke patients, doctors noticed that different spots within the language centerr would light up when people used verbs bersus nouns. We biologically separate them. How freakin' cool is that? It transcends languages and dialect. It goes in the face of the idea that language is something that we learn. The interaction of our brains with language is so incredible.

Other cool things about brains and language development I've learned from random English classes:

No matter how many languages you speak or how long you've spoken them, when you are in an extremely heightened state of emotion, have an extremely high fever, or are otherwise greatly compromised, you revert to the first language you spoke.

"Wolf Children," or people who grow up without and real human interaction, (depressing as it is, they do exist) can't develop language as fully as those who are around it when they are young. The implication of this is that language structure and vocabulary are things that you gain when you are very young and there is, in fact, an age at which you become physically unable to acquire the language.

I don't know if anyone else has noticed this or if it's just me, but I feel like my brain is sectioned off into "English" and "Not English." When I speak a foreign language, it often comes out as a mix of several different ones. It drives my French professor crazy that my minor is French, but I constantly say things in Spanish and even a bit of German. I was surprised to discover how much more I knew when I stopped trying to think just in the terms of one language. I wonder if there's a subdivision similar to the noun/verb one at work...


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