A Critical Introduction to Language Evolution

Current Controversies and Future Prospects

  • Ljiljana¬†Progovac

Part of the SpringerBriefs in Linguistics book series (SBIL)

Also part of the Expert Briefs book sub series (SBEB)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiv
  2. Ljiljana Progovac
    Pages 1-13
  3. Ljiljana Progovac
    Pages 31-66

About this book


This book provides a critical introduction to the current views and controversies regarding language evolution. It sheds new light on hot topics such as: How ancient is language? Did Neanderthals have some form of language? Did language evolve gradually and incrementally, through stages, or suddenly, in one leap, in all its complexity? Does language evolution involve natural selection or not?


This book is essential reading for scholars and students interested in language evolution, especially those in the fields of linguistics, psychology, biology, anthropology, and neuroscience. 


Language evolution Earliest grammars Antiquity of language Neanderthal language Linguistic reconstruction Evolving syntax Hominin timeline

Authors and affiliations

  • Ljiljana¬†Progovac
    • 1
  1. 1.Linguistics DepartmentWayne State UniversityDetroitUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Social Sciences Social Sciences (R0)
  • Print ISBN 978-3-030-03234-0
  • Online ISBN 978-3-030-03235-7
  • Series Print ISSN 2197-0009
  • Series Online ISSN 2197-0017
  • Buy this book on publisher's site