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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hokuga.hgu.jp/dspace/handle/123456789/1444

Title: A review of The Blank Slate by Stephen Pinker
Authors: Munby, Ian
マンビ, イアン
Issue Date: 30-Nov-2006
Publisher: 北海学園大学人文学会
Abstract: During the last two decades the nature-nurture debate has given rise to bitter feuding between those who believe that human nature is, to a great extent, pre-written in our genes and those who believe that our talents, personality traits, strengths and weaknesses are crucially influenced by our environment, culture and upbringing. This latest work by Pinker aims to shift the balance towards the nature end of the cline by arguing for a more scientific, biological study of the human mind or brain and questioning the importance of environmental factors in our cognitive growth and development. This paper begins with some background to the nature-nurture debate, specifically with regard to IQ, and attempts to evaluate its significance for teachers and learners of second languages. Are humans, or our students, blank slates onto whose brains can be written anything or are our brains pre-programmed to perform in different ways? There follows a critical analysis of Pinker's ideas and concludes with a discussion of the implications for second language acquisition studies.
URI: http://hokuga.hgu.jp/dspace/handle/123456789/1444
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