Talking With Our Hands


Do you talk with your hands? Have you ever wondered why? This hour on Focus, host Jim Meadows talks with Susan Goldin-Meadow about how gestures play a role in our language. We’ll talk with her about why some gestures are the same from culture to culture and why some vary so much. Meadows also talks with her about how gestures play a role in learning language. According to Goldin-Meadow, deaf children with hearing parents will develop their own gesturing system to communicate, and many children’s signs are the same even though they’ve never met.

When do gestures become a language all their own? Can you classify common gestures we use every day as its own language? Did early humans talk with their hands before they had spoken language? We’ll find out this hour on Focus.

Among her many honors and accolades, Goldin-Meadow is currently the President of the Cognitive Development Society and a Professor of Psychology at the University of Chicago. She will be speaking tonight at 8:00pm at the Alice Campbell Alumni Center.