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Left Brain Talks To The Right Hand, Study Finds - featured October 25, 2010

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Our ability to speak and communicate seems to have its origin in the unlikely pairing of the left brain and the right hand.

At least that's the conclusion of a team of French researchers who looked at how our brains process syllables, as well as mouth and hand movements.

And it supports the theory that human speech evolved from sounds and hand gestures.


The team followed the brain activity of 16 right-handed people while they rested or watched a video. When the people heard syllables, areas in the left side of the brain involved in speech fired neurons in time with areas involved in hand and mouth motions.

But when the subjects heard smaller units of speech, called phonemes, these two areas were not synchronized.

The finding, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggests that our brains are hard-wired to process gestures and speech and language on the same side of the brain. For right-handed people, that's usually the left side.

Read the Rest of this Article on NPR.org


Tags: News of the Week Language Newsletter 29 October 2010