Historical Background

  • Donald F. Proctor


If we had to pick one characteristic which distinguishes most clearly between man and beast what else could it be but speech? Indeed in the evolution of man as the species known as homo sapiens the time at which that designation becomes first applicable probably coincides with the time when employment of some form of primitive speech developed. Although it has been argued that man’s large brain and other physical characteristics made speech possible there is reason to believe that the beginnings of speech communication may have influenced the development of the brain. Thus we might say that speech is as old as man. But, in contrast to other physiological functions, for some reason scientific inquiries into its origins and nature are of relatively recent date (6, 29, 32, 40, 52, 53, 56).


Historical Background Sound Production Stringed Instrument Howling Monkey Speech Hearing 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Wien 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald F. Proctor
    • 1
  1. 1.The Johns Hopkins Schools of Medicine and Hygiene and Public HealthBaltimoreUSA

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