LINGUIST List 27.959

Tue Feb 23 2016

Books: Language in Prehistory: Barnard

Editor for this issue: Sara Couture <>

Date: 18-Feb-2016
From: Katie Laker <>
Subject: Language in Prehistory: Barnard
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Title: Language in Prehistory
Publication Year: 2016
Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Book URL:

Author: Alan Barnard

Paperback: ISBN: 9781107692596 Pages: Price: U.S. $ 24.99
Paperback: ISBN: 9781107692596 Pages: Price: U.K. £ 17.99


For ninety per cent of our history, humans have lived as 'hunters and
gatherers', and for most of this time as talking individuals. No direct
evidence for the origin and evolution of language exists; we do not even know
if early humans had language, either spoken or signed. Taking an
anthropological perspective, Alan Barnard acknowledges this difficulty and
argues that we can nevertheless infer a great deal about our linguistic past
from what is around us in the present. Hunter-gatherers still inhabit much of
the world, and in sufficient number to enable us to study the ways in which
they speak, the many languages they use, and what they use them for. Barnard
investigates the lives of hunter-gatherers by understanding them in their own
terms, to create a book which will be welcomed by all those interested in the
evolution of language.

1. Introduction; 2. Population diversity and language diversity; 3. What did
prehistoric people do?; 4. How did prehistoric people think?; 5. Narratives of
the every-day; 6. Mythological narratives; 7. Sexual selection and language
evolution; 8. Conclusions and thoughts for the future.

Linguistic Field(s): Anthropological Linguistics
Historical Linguistics

Written In: English (eng)

See this book announcement on our website:

---------------------------------- Publishing Partner ----------------------------------
Cambridge University Press

----------------------------- Major Supporting Publishers -----------------------------
Akademie Verlag GmbH
Bloomsbury Linguistics (formerly Continuum Linguistics)
Cambridge Scholars Publishing
Cascadilla Press
Classiques Garnier
De Gruyter Mouton
Edinburgh University Press
Elsevier Ltd
Equinox Publishing Ltd
European Language Resources Association (ELRA)
Georgetown University Press
John Benjamins
Lincom GmbH
MIT Press
Multilingual Matters
Narr Francke Attempto Verlag GmbH + Co. KG
Oxford University Press
Palgrave Macmillan
Peter Lang AG
Routledge (Taylor and Francis)
University of Toronto Press

--------------------------- Other Supporting Publishers ---------------------------
Association of Editors of the Journal of Portuguese Linguistics
International Pragmatics Assoc.
Linguistic Association of Finland
Morgan & Claypool Publishers
Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics / Landelijke (LOT)
Seoul National University
SIL International Publications
Universitat Jaume I
University of Nebraska Press
Utrecht institute of Linguistics

Page Updated: 23-Feb-2016