Don’t Sleep, There are Snakes : Life and Language in the Amazonian Jungle
by Daniel Everett
Editor: Profile Books Ltd
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Although Daniel Everett was a missionary, far from the conversion of the Pirahas, they converted himHe shows the slow, meticulous steps by which he gradually mastered their language and his gradual realisation that his unusual character near his orators’ strikingly original perceptions of the worldEverett describes how he began to understand that his discoveries about the Piraha language open up a new way of understanding the functioning of language in our minds and in our lives, and that in this way is totally in contradiction with Noam Chomsky’s universally accepted linguistic theoriesThe dangers of academic enthusiasts of the opposition were then quickly associated with those of the Amazon in a debate whose outcome has yet to winEverett’s views are most recently discussed by Tom Wolfe’s best-selling Au Royaume de la ParolePersonal adventure, enlightenment and the fabric of a scientific revolution move forward together in this lively, funny and moving book
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