Publication 549

Maturana H. R. (1978) Biology of language: The epistemology of reality. In: Miller G. & Lenneberg E. (eds.) Psychology and biology of language and thought: Essays in honor of Eric Lenneberg. Academic Press, New York: 27–63. Fulltext at
I am not a linguist, I am a biologist. Therefore, I shall speak about language as a biologist, and address myself to two basic biological questions, namely: 1. What processes must take place in an organism for it to establish a linguistic domain with another organism? 2. What processes take place in a linguistic interaction that permit an organism (us) to describe and to predict events that it may experience? This is my way of honoring the memory of Eric H. Lenneberg, if one honors the memory of another scientist by speaking about one's own work Whatever the case, I wish to honor his memory not only because of his great accomplishments, but also because he was capable of inspiring his students, as the symposium on which this book is based revealed. The only way I can do this is to accept the honor of presenting my views about biology, language, and reality. I shall, accordingly, speak about language as a biologist. In doing so, I shall use language, notwithstanding that this use of language to speak about language is within the core of the problem I wish to consider.

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