Piero Scaruffi(Copyright © 2013 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions )
These are excerpts and elaborations from my book "The Nature of Consciousness"
What is, ultimately, the function of language? To communicate? To think? To remember? All of this and more. But, most likely, not only for the sake of the individual. Language's crucial function is to create a unit out of so many individuals. Once we learn to speak, we become part of something bigger than our selves. We inherit other people's memories (including the memories of people who have long been dead) and become capable of sharing our own memories with other people (even those who have not been born yet).
Thanks to language, the entire human race becomes one cognitive unit, with the ability to perceive, learn, remember, reason, and so forth. Language turns the minds of millions of individuals into gears at the service of one gigantic mind.
As the US neuroscientist Paul Churchland once pointed out, language creates a collective cognition, a collective memory and intelligence.
Back to the beginning of the chapter "The History of Language: Why We Speak" | Back to the index of all chapters