Phi-Features in Animal Cognition


  • Chris Golston


This paper argues that the core phi-features behind grammatical person, number, and gender are widely used in animal cognition and are in no way limited to humans or to communication. Based on this, it is hypothesized (i) that the semantics behind phi-features were fixed long before primates evolved, (ii) that most go back as far as far as vertebrates, and (iii) that some are shared with insects and plants.

Author Biography

Chris Golston, California State University Fresno
Department of Linguistics Professor