Daily Archives: April 15, 2011

Human language originated only in southern Africa, new study argues

The Washington Post reports:

Human language arose only once, in southern Africa, a first-of-its-kind analysis of world languages suggests.

Verbal communication then spread across the globe as humans walked out of Africa, reaching Australia and New Zealand last…

Quentin Atkinson, a psychologist at the University of Auckland in New Zealand, traced languageā€™s origin by breaking down 504 world languages into their smallest components, called phonemes.

Atkinson’s study has been published in the journal Science.