[PLing] The Syntax of Mind: An International Conference (Vienna, April 17-19)

estela puig waldmüller estela.puig at univie.ac.at
Mon Mar 10 17:14:20 CET 2014


The Syntax of Mind: An International Conference

This conference will occur in Vienna April 17-19, over the Easter  
holiday, immediately following the International Evolution of  
Language Conference (EVOLANG X) in Vienna.

We invite the submission of abstracts for posters and short 30 min.  
Prizes for best talk and best poster will be awarded.

The conference will be hosted and introduced by Prof. W. Tecumseh  
Fitch (Department of Cognitive Biology, University of Vienna).

No registration fee!

A fundamental and recurring question in cognitive science concerns  
the modularity of mind: to what degree are computations and the  
representations they operate upon encapsulated to particular  
cognitive domains such as language, vision, music or action?  An  
equally fundamental question for cognitive biology concerns species- 
specificity: what aspects of cognition in a species rely on species- 
specific versus clade-general computations?

In the past decade, major progress has been made in exploring both of  
these issues, much of it relying upon artificial grammar learning and  
related paradigms.  Current results suggest that certain  
computational processes are shared, at least between language and  
music, and thus constitute integrating "horizontal" or cross-domain  
aspects of human cognition.  While broadly characterized as  
"hierarchical processing" or "syntax", they include phenomena in a  
variety of subdomains including phonology and rhythm.  However, the  
picture remains murky with respect to nonhuman animals, with little  
evidence of human-like skills in other primates, but increasing  
evidence for repeated convergent evolution of analogous traits in  
birds and marine mammals.

This conference will provide a state-of-the-art update on this fast- 
moving field, and will focus on overlaps between and evolution of  
spoken language and music, researching employing artificial grammar  
learning, and comparative work in these areas with a wide range of  
animal species.

Keynote Speakers will include:

Sandra Trehub

Simon Kirby

Stefan Koelsch

Kazuo Okanoya

Christophe Pallier

Julia Udden

More Information + Registration:


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