The Bilingual Brain Revisited
What Is Right and What Is Left?
ByVaid Jyotsna
Pages 17

This chapter highlights key points from reviews and points out areas where additional research may be informative. It begins with providing a rationale for the study of the bilingual brain. One reason to study the bilingual brain is simply to understand how language is acquired, processed, and represented among users who constitute the majority of language users. An important source of evidence about the bilingual brain comes from clinical case ­studies of aphasia, or language disturbances following unilateral brain injury. The most extensive body of research on language and the brain in brain-intact bilinguals involves behavioral laterality studies of functional hemispheric asymmetries or brain lateralization. The meta-analysis findings are instructive in showing that the critical difference in brain lateralization of language may involve differences between groups rather than between languages. Lectrophysiological research suggests the importance of early language experience in influencing how neural subsystems underlying language develops and function.