Thursday, November 05, 2009

The Melody of Language

Newborns' Cry Melody Is Shaped by Their Native Language

Scientist at University of Würzburg found that human fetuses are able to memorize auditory stimuli from the external world by the last trimester of pregnancy, with a particular sensitivity to melody contour in both music and language. Newborns prefer their mother's voice over other voices and perceive the emotional content of messages conveyed via intonation contours in maternal speech (“motherese”).This prenatal exposure to native-language prosody influences newborns' perception leading to a specific cry melody. Later on surrounding speech influences the newborn's sound production.

This research confirms what dr.Tomatis already found 50 years ago: we are born with the memory of our mothers voice. He based his wonderful listening therapy on this melody of language. More info:

1 comment:

Marja said...

Fascinating I heard that some people play classical music to their unborn baby.
Love your site We have a lot of picture thinkers in the family so I am very interested in the subject