Linguistics, neurocognition, and phenomenological psychology are fundamentally different fields of research. Helmut Schnelle provides an interdisciplinary understanding of a new integrated field in which linguists can be competent in neurocognition and neuroscientists in structure linguistics. Consequently the first part of the book is a systematic introduction to the function of the form and meaning-organising brain component - with the essential core elements being perceptions, actions, attention, emotion and feeling. Their descriptions provide foundations for experiences based on semantics and pragmatics. The second part is addressed to non-linguists and presents the structural foundations of currently established linguistic frameworks. This book should be serious reading for anyone interested in a comprehensive understanding of language, in which evolution, functional organisation and hierarchies are explained by reference to brain architecture and dynamics.
Helmut Schnelle graduated in 1957 with a degree in Physics. His postgraduate studies between 1958 and 1962 included cybernetics, linguistics, and philosophy, leading to the first doctorate in philosophy on Leibniz' Arte Combinatoria. In 1967 he achieved a second doctorate (Dr. phil. habil.) based on the book manuscript 'Prolegomena for Formalization of Levels of Linguistics' and became Full Professor of Linguistics in Berlin. He has participated in US-supported research in theoretical and computational linguistics and in machine translation, including methodological discussions of linguistics at Hebrew University, research at the linguistic department of MIT and a study with Columbia University transforming east and west-European Yiddish language dialects into computer data. He has served as an academic consultant for IBM Germany in a project developing programs for practical uses of language. He is member of Academia Europea (London), Honorary Member of the Cercle Linguistique de Prague and in 2000 became Honorary doctorate at Bielefeld University, Germany. He was editor of the journal Theoretical Linguistics between 1974 and 2000. Helmut Schnelle also organised the first conference about language and the brain, on the occasion of awarding the honorary doctorate to Roman Jakobson and has since organized a 'Mind/Brain' conference in Paris. He is now continuing work with the Ruhr Universitat Bochum, focusing on studying language in the brain and its organization of neural networks.
Part I. Introducing Cognitive Neuroscience to Linguists: 1. The brain in functional perspective; 2. Organization in complex organisms; 3. Neural perspectives of semantics: examples of seeing, acting, memorizing, meaningful understanding, feeling, and thought; 4. Combination and integration of intelligent thought and feeling; Part II. Introducing Linguistics to Scientists: 5. Introducing formal grammar; 6. Grammar as life; 7. Integrating language organization in mind and brain - the world of thinking and knowing, liking or hating other people's mind/brain/bodies; 8. Dynamic language organization in stages of complexity.