Language and Brain Research Group
The main aim of the research group is to gain a better understanding of the neural foundations of linguistic meaning making and semantic comprehension using neuroscientific tools (mainly EEG). Two complementary approaches are employed. First, the neural computations underlying metaphorical meaning could provide a deep insight into how we construe abstract, contextual, indirect layers of meaning. Even language taken to be literal is mostly comprehended through inferences, in broader social and communicative contexts. The second approach is investigating exactly the social dimension of the creative process of language understanding and language acquisition in infancy. How do babies use their Theory-of-Mind abilities (the feat of attributing mental states, thoughts, to others, independent of our own thoughts), to infer meaning as intended by communicative partners? How does meaning emerge in our mind, exactly the meaning that our social partners meant to convey – and us to understand?