Topics: Linguistics, Noam Chomsky, Grammar Pages: 2 (500 words) Published: April 7, 2013
                                        Genie: A Scientific Tragedy Genie tells the story of a 13 year old girl who was secluded throughout her childhood years and into her teens with little or no stimulation.  In the book, we see how the scientists and linguists tried to help her understand the world around her and interact with people around her. The linguists tried to get her to speak and express her emotions instead of gesturing or pointing every time she needed something. According to the linguists and scientists that studied her, she was a non-verbal communicator. Language is a way of communicating with other people around us; it can be spoken, written, or signed. I believe language is innate; it is biological. We start speaking when we’re still toddlers, with our first words usually being ‘momma” or “dada”. We scream when we need to be changed, fed, burped, restless, etc. We point to things we want and make up words for other things we want and need. We are born with the ability to communicate with people around us, whether verbally or non-verbally.  To understand someone, you do not necessarily have to speak. Hearing impaired people communicate with each other by signing and gesturing.  It is easier to learn a language between the ages of 2 and 5, because as we get older, our ability to learn a different language and speak it becomes difficult. Genie was slow to speak because she wasn’t given the chance to express herself freely growing up. Since Genie was secluded throughout her childhood years, it would take an extensive amount of time for her to learn to speak. When I read the book, I realized that she did improve in her verbal communicating skills when she was with Jean Butler and the Riglers, but when she went back to stay with her mom and then to the foster care for mentally challenged adults, she regressed significantly. When Jay Schurley or the other scientists that went to visit her saw the change, they should have immediately taken her...
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