Introduction on timing and phonology

Introduction on timing and phonology Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal 15: 1–3, 2002. © 2002 Kluwer Academic Publishers. Printed in the Netherlands. ZVIA BREZNITZ & DAVID SHARE University of Haifa, Israel Reading acquisition in an alphabetic orthography is an activity lacking any evolutionary basis. The human brain evolved hundreds of thousands of years before orthography was discovered. An alphabetic orthography, in which orthographic symbols represent neither meaningful words, nor acoustically integral syllables, but abstract and meaningless units of speech (phonemes) is, understandably, only a recent cultural invention. Basic cerebral mechan- isms have evolved to deal with vision and spoken language but not ‘visible language’. The fact that the brain is not ‘wired’ for reading partly explains why reading does not come ‘naturally’ like speech or visual perception which both appear very early and universally in child development. This cultural ‘imposition’ on the brain makes learning to read an alphabetic orthography a challenge not only for young children but also for scientists seeking to understand what is surely one of the most complex human accomplishments. Yet despite these obstacles, the last several decades have witnessed major scientific advances in our understanding of the nature of reading acquisition and the causes of reading difficulty. It http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Reading and Writing Springer Journals

Introduction on timing and phonology

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Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 2002 by Kluwer Academic Publishers
Subject
Linguistics; Language and Literature; Psycholinguistics; Education, general; Neurology; Literacy
ISSN
0922-4777
eISSN
1573-0905
D.O.I.
10.1023/A:1013810702543
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Reading and Writing: An Interdisciplinary Journal 15: 1–3, 2002. © 2002 Kluwer Academic Publishers. Printed in the Netherlands. ZVIA BREZNITZ & DAVID SHARE University of Haifa, Israel Reading acquisition in an alphabetic orthography is an activity lacking any evolutionary basis. The human brain evolved hundreds of thousands of years before orthography was discovered. An alphabetic orthography, in which orthographic symbols represent neither meaningful words, nor acoustically integral syllables, but abstract and meaningless units of speech (phonemes) is, understandably, only a recent cultural invention. Basic cerebral mechan- isms have evolved to deal with vision and spoken language but not ‘visible language’. The fact that the brain is not ‘wired’ for reading partly explains why reading does not come ‘naturally’ like speech or visual perception which both appear very early and universally in child development. This cultural ‘imposition’ on the brain makes learning to read an alphabetic orthography a challenge not only for young children but also for scientists seeking to understand what is surely one of the most complex human accomplishments. Yet despite these obstacles, the last several decades have witnessed major scientific advances in our understanding of the nature of reading acquisition and the causes of reading difficulty. It

Journal

Reading and WritingSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 13, 2004

References

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