Steven Pinker

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Department of Psychology
Harvard University
Best American Science and Nature Writing The Blank Slate Words and Rules How the Mind Works The Language Instinct Learnability and Cognition Language Learnability and Language Development Edited Academic Volumes


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"Reading Steven Pinker's book is one of the biggest favours I've ever done my brain. It is the sort of writing that any genuine expert on a subject longs to achieve: highly accessible to the general reader yet at the same time seminal for professionals. Laypeople will be gripped by a lucid and witty introduction to the fascinating subject of linguistics. Orthodox social scientists—and their biologist fellow travelers—will find a formidable Darwinian challenge to their cherished dogmas. Word-pedants like me (or those that say 'gender' when they mean 'sex') will retreat chastened. Even if you disagree with it, you'll surely be charmed and engaged by this brilliant work."
—Richard Dawkins, author of The Selfish Gene

"Somebody finally got it right. Steve Pinker's thoroughly modern, totally engaging book introduces lay readers to the science of language in ways that are irreverent and hilarious while coherent and factually sound. A delicious read."
—Leila Gleitman, University of Pennsylvania; President, Linguistic Society of America

"Steven Pinker is, I think, engagingly wrong in some of his conclusions, but the operative word here is engagingly: He reminds us of the pleasures of reading about language, provided people like him are at the wheel."
—William F. Buckley, Jr.

"Steven Pinker, one of the leading linguistic researchers in the world, skillfully defends a provocative thesis about the biological bases of language and in the process provides authoritative answers to major questions about the nature of language. The Language Instinct is a splendid and indispensable book."
—Howard Gardner, Graduate School of Education, Harvard University; author of Multiple Intelligences: The Theory in Practice

"Run, don't walk, to your bookstore and buy The Language Instinct. In a dazzling, informative, and funny book, Steven Pinker brings you into the wonderful world of language. He spares the reader the mumbo jumbo of linguistics and directs your attention to an unalterable truth. Language is an instinct, and in that discovery, Pinker reveals the secrets of mind. It is brilliant."
—Michael S. Gazzaniga, Director, Center for Neuroscience, University of Califonia, Davis; author of Nature's Mind

"An extremely valuable book, very informative, and very well written as well."
—Noam Chomsky