SCSB Colloquium Series: The Social Origins of Language and Thought

Wednesday, April 05, 2023 at 4:00pm to 5:00pm

46-3002, 46-3002, Singleton Auditorium 43 Vassar Street

Date: Wednesday, April 5, 2023
Location: 46-3002 (Singleton Auditorium) and YouTube Stream (

Speaker: Robert Seyfarth, Ph.D.
Affiliation: Emeritus Professor of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania

Host: Dr. Ev Fedorenko

Talk title: The Social Origins of Language and Thought

Abstract: In humans, thought and language have evolved together. The same holds for monkeys and apes. Yet compared to humans, nonhuman primates present us with a dilemma: they have a relatively small repertoire of calls but live for years in complex societies where individuals use communication and cognition to establish and maintain their social relations. How do they manage? What do they know about the relations among their companions, and what does their social knowledge tell us about the origins of human language and thought?

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