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  • 1 (1) Anthropology, McGill University and Université de Montréal; (2) Sociology, Université d'Ottawa Montréal, Québec; Ontario, Canada
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This paper reviews a number of disciplinary connections between evolutionary biology and linguistics as suggested by linguists, cognitive scientists, anthropologists and evolutionary biologists. It constitutes a survey of the various kinds of links proposed between evolutionary biology and linguistics. By adopting this research perspective it is not intended here to support any kind of biological determinism in human linguistic capabilities. Rather, the goal of this analysis rests entirely with a formal analysis of the integration of scientific disciplines. However, it is worth noting that as a phenomenon which also belongs to the cultural sphere, perhaps most notably through semantics, metaphors, and symbolic representation, the analysis of the connections between linguistics and the social sciences constitutes an entirely legitimate entreprise. This paper is especially concerned with three topics. First, evolutionary biology covers a wide spectrum of divergent theories and conceptions. Is this entire spectrum exploited to investigate linguistic questions? Secondly, what is the nature of the integration between linguistics and evolutionary biology? Is it profound or superficial in nature? Lastly, can linguists and cognitive scientists embrace specific evolutionary theories without adopting the philosophical and metaphysical conceptions that are sometimes attached to them? These topics will be investigated through three research areas: scenarios of hominization, historical linguistics and the language faculty.

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