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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more

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Subject: Voice and sound processing in the brain
Question: Hello,

How does the brain recognize whether a signal is a voice (and belongs to a language system) or it is a noise? From what age can a young baby gain this ability?

And finally could you please introduce me some books or sources on these topics for additional information?


Reply: I think it is established that babies recognize at least their mother's speech as "special", as opposed to "noise", already in the womb. The question "how does the brain recognize ..." is a very deep one, though; I'm not sure that anyone in 2012 could give an adequate answer to this (and I certainly can't, I'm afraid).

Geoffrey Sampson

Reply From: Geoffrey Richard Sampson      click here to access email
Date: 31-Aug-2012
Other Replies:
  1. Re: Voice and sound processing in the brain    Madalena Cruz-Ferreira     (30-Aug-2012)
  2. Re: Voice and sound processing in the brain    Anthea Fraser Gupta     (02-Sep-2012)

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