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Hearing Gesture


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Table of Contents

* Preface * I. A Window on the Mind *1. Gesture Is Everywhere *2. Not Just Hand Waving *3. Giving Our Thoughts Away *4. Who Is Ready to Learn? *5. Only the Hands Know for Sure * II. Communicating *6. Everyone Reads Gesture *7. Understanding Speech *8. In the Classroom *9. Learning by Gesturing to Others * III. Thinking *10. Gesturing in the Dark *11. Gesturing Helps *12. Gesturing Leads to Change * IV. When There Is Only Gesture *13. Gesture within a Community *14. Gesture by a Child *15. Gesture on the Spot * Conclusion: Talking and Thinking with Gesture * References * Credits * Index

Promotional Information

Susan Goldin-Meadow is the world's leading researcher into the cognitive meaning of gesture, and a beautiful writer as well. In this fascinating book, she shows us how gesture helps us think, remember, and learn, whether or not we're communicating anything to anyone else. Everybody gestures--she has told us why. -- Annette Karmiloff-Smith, co-author, Pathways to Language Hearing Gesture is a treasure trove of observations and insights. A keen observer, witty writer, and remarkably creative experimenter, Goldin-Meadow focuses on our simplest and seemingly least consequential actions and draws from them a set of deep truths about the ways children and adults converse, think, and learn. -- Elizabeth Spelke, Harvard University

About the Author

Susan Goldin-Meadow is Irving B. Harris Professor of Psychology at the University of Chicago.


Goldin-Meadow offers a naturalistic study of gesture in children and adults that will convince the reader that gesture (as she defines it) is an inseparable part of speech, communication, and thought. Indeed, after reading this study one wonders whether the written word alone can really do the job of communicating. -- M. W. York Choice 20040401 Hearing Gesture is an engaging (even suspenseful) read and, with its clear and informal style, should be largely accessible to non-experts...Readers will be impressed by [Goldin-Meadow's] extraordinary combination of thoughtful insight, experimental ingenuity and immense persistence and dedication to the search for knowledge...Hearing Gesture stands beside McNeill's Hand and Mind and Language and Gesture as a milestone in the study of gesture's relationship with language and thought. It may help to reshape the basic premises and methods of psychologists, linguists and other social scientists. -- Eve Sweetser Nature 20040610 In Hearing Gesture, Susan Goldin-Meadow summarises 20 years of her own and others' research. She comments on topics that range from the gestural communication systems used by workers in sawmills, where noise prevents talk, and Trappist monks, whose vows preclude talk, to Australian aboriginal women silent while in mourning, and the gestural lingua franca of Plains Indians...Hearing Gesture...for the next decade will be the starting point for those interested in gesture. -- Chris McManus Times Higher Education Supplement 20041001

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