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Title: Apes And Language

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Subject: Literature
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Date: April 24, 2006
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Length: 6 / 1628
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At Central Washington University the baby chimpanzee Loulis placed in the care of the signing chimpanzee Washoe, mastered nearly fifty signs in American Sign Language without help from humans. "Interestingly," wrote researcher Fouts (1997), "Loulis did not pick up any of the seven signs that we [humans] used around him...

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He learned only from Washoe and [another chimp] Ally" (p. 244). The extent to which chimpanzees spontaneously use language may depend on their training. Terrace trained Nim using the behaviorist technique of operant conditioning, so it is not surprising that many of Nim's signs were cued...

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