Protophones and Other Vocalizations
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Protophones and Other Vocalizations book
Protophones include (among other categories) quasivowels, goos, fully resonant nuclei, raspberries, and both marginal and canonical babbling. Why do such sounds exist? Protophones do not, in early stages of development, transmit specific linguistic meanings, and thus they are not communicative in the full sense that speech is communicative. When babies produce protophones, it often appears that their only purpose is play or practice, although on other occasions the same sounds can be utilized expressively and socially. Are these expressive uses of sufficient value to justify the existence of protophones in individual infants? Is it possible instead that protophones are artifacts of the process of development or even relics of our evolutionary history?