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Journal Article

The neural basis for human syntax: Broca's area and beyond


Friederici,  Angela D.
Department Neuropsychology, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society;

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Friederici, A. D. (2018). The neural basis for human syntax: Broca's area and beyond. Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences, 21, 88-92. doi:10.1016/j.cobeha.2018.03.004.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0000-F063-1
Language is a uniquely human cognitive system which is biologically grounded in the human brain. Recent studies have shown that syntax processing in humans can be separated from sequence processing, a cognitive ability also present in non-human primates. Syntactic processing as the core of human language is subserved specifically by BA 44 located in the posterior portion of Broca's area in the left inferior frontal gyrus and its white matter connection to the posterior temporal cortex. It is only when this fronto-temporal system has emerged that full syntactic abilities are present — both in phylogeny and ontogeny.