The Kingdom of Speech

All cosmogonies, whether the Apaches’ or Charles Darwin’s, faced the same problem. They were histories or, better said, stories of things that had occurred in a primordial past, long before there existed anyone capable of recording them. The Apaches’ scorpion and Darwin’s cells in that warm pool somewhere were by definition educated guesses. Darwin,

As Sigmund Freud would put it thirty-five years later in similar circumstances, “Many enemies, much honor.” Darwin

Darwin’s goal was to show that all Müller’s and Wallace’s Higher Things evolved from animals—animals even as small as earwigs. He had no evidence, causing him to fall back over and over on the life and times of my dog. Fellow

Darwin’s notion that language had somehow evolved from imitation of animal sounds…Müller called that the bow-wow theory. The

he published a manifesto with a title Darwinists have been quoting ever since: “Nothing in Biology Makes Sense Except in the Light of Evolution.”78

Huxley became such an ardent Darwinist not because he believed in Darwin’s theory of natural selection—he never did—but because Darwin was obviously an atheist, just as he was. No

If a monkey has become a man—what may not a man become?

If language sealed off man from animal, then the Theory of Evolution applied only to animal studies and reached no higher than the hairy apes. M

In the 1920s and 1930s they hit upon the bright idea of co-opting genetics and treating it as one of the Theory of Evolution’s components. A

In the Navajo cosmogony the agent of change (as distinct from the creator) was alive. It was Locust. In Darwin’s cosmogony it had to be scientifically inanimate. Locust was renamed Evolution.

In this respect, Darwinism was typical of the more primitive cosmogonies. They avoided the question of how the world developed ex nihilo. Darwin

It is the responsibility of intellectuals,” he said, “to speak the truth and to expose lies. This, at least, may seem enough of a truism to pass over without comment. Not so, however. For the modern intellectual, it is not at all obvious.

Le parole sono una forma elementare di mnemonica: una sequenza di suoni (l’alfabeto) usati per ricordare qualsiasi cosa, dalla più piccola alla più grande. Il linguaggio è, in sostanza, il ricorso a queste particolari mnemotecniche – le parole – per creare significato. E il parlare altro non è che un sistema ... mnemonico: un sistema che ha permesso all’Homo sapiens di assumere il controllo dell’intero mondo. È il linguaggio, e il linguaggio soltanto, con la sua mnemonica, che crea la memoria nel momento in cui l’Homo sapiens ne fa esperienza. Persino le scimmie più intelligenti non hanno pensieri, al massimo reazioni condizionate a certe pressioni primordiali, primi fra tutti il bisogno di cibo e il timore di fronte a minacce fisiche. Si badi bene, però, che la mnemonica non è semplicemente al servizio del linguaggio: la mnemonica è il linguaggio. Per tutta la storia del parlare umano – ed è irrilevante azzardare le solite congetture paleontologiche riguardo la sua datazione – l’uomo ha convertito oggetti, azioni, pensieri, concetti ed emozioni in codici chiamati convenzionalmente parole. Oggi nessuno sa – e non c’è ragione di ritenere che qualcuno avrà mai buone probabilità di saperlo – quando sia accaduto all’Homo sapiens di usare le parole come mnemonica, ma attualmente vi sono in tutto il mondo sei-settemila sistemi mnemonici diversi, meglio noti come lingue. Questi, e questi soli, sono il linguaggio. Semplici e chiari. Potrà anche essere divertente starsene a guardare individui, peraltro di comprovata intelligenza, spaccarsi il cranio contro lo stesso firewall: intere mandrie, intere generazioni, ere, età, un intero, luminoso firmamento di individui... Ma fino a quando?

often in The Descent of Man, “my dog” steps forth as major evidence.

Only such a power, “a new power of definite character,” can account for “ever-advancing” man.53 Whatever that power is, it is infinitely more important than mere natural selection.

Subscribing to Darwinism showed that one was part of a bright, enlightened minority who shone far above the mooing herd down below. There

The difference in Darwin’s case was that he put together his story in an increasingly rational age. It

The first person to refer to Darwin’s tales as Just So Stories was a Harvard paleontologist and evolutionist, Stephen Jay Gould, in 1978.61

The power of the human brain was so far beyond the boundaries of natural selection that the term became meaningless in explaining the origins of man.

The Science of Language will yet enable us to withstand the extreme theories of evolutionists and to draw a hard and fast line between man and brute.

The theory and the atheistic bias that came with it spread quickly to Germany, Italy, Spain, and to self-professed intellectual elites in the United States, even

To say that animals evolved into man is like saying that Carrara marble evolved in to Michelangelo’s David. Speech

To say that animals evolved into man is like saying that Carrara marble evolved into Michelangelo's David. Speech is what man pays homage to in every moment he can imagine.

We argue instead that the richness of ideas is accompanied by a poverty of evidence, with essentially no explanation of how and why our linguistic computations and representations evolved.

Without mentioning Darwin by name, he said the “doctrine that there is no cardinal distinction between man and animal” will demoralize humanity throughout the West; it will lead to the rise of “barbaric nationalistic brotherhoods”—he all but called them by name: Nazism, Communism, and Fascism—and result within one generation in “wars such as never have been fought before.” If