Your Brain Does a Little Vocabulary Lesson Every Time You Read a Word
One of the biggest secrets in neuropsychology is about the way our brains regulate language.
The particular part of the brain that processes language – one of the most extensive areas of the brain – is located in the mid-ear. In fact, that’s where the word mind changes from word mind to mind. The word mind changes to mindshift.
Why does this happen? Well, it’s the brain’s specialized processing devices, called neurons, which register the meaning of words. One of these special processing devices is the auditory cortex, which carries out certain tasks when there’s sound in the air, which it does all the time. If you think a word sounds weird, or if you are curious about that word, you just listen. It’s almost like being able to build your own auditory brain while you hear a word. Or something like that.
Depending on what you’re listening to, you can learn something about your brain. If you learn that words are generally broken down into both literal and figurative forms, you also learn the meaning of words and how they’re deployed.
If you learned that it’s not that complicated a problem to mix up the definition of a word in the first place, you’ll be able to reduce that word confusion caused by that faulty comprehension as well. According to NPR, one-third of college students consider themselves to be linguists. They realize that on the whole, the way they grasp words is well off. This realization that the definition of a word can change from “first” to “immediate” is largely attributable to the semantic parsing ability of neurons in the mid-ear.
So how does your brain make sense of words? Who’s using words? What’s the context? Does the word really have a three-word meaning, or was it originally six or eight words? It’s not a matter of just being aware that all these things can happen. You also have to learn that a word can change shape and size as well as the structure and number of words, depending on how you’re processing the word, and from what context.
Your brain understands the first part, and all it takes is a little coaxing. For example, if you find out about words being separated into figurative and literal forms, your brain understands that the meaning of words is generic, and its working on a few options when it receives the word. It’s really figuring out what the meaning is at this point. If you knew you were going to be absorbed into five-month-long intensive study and tutoring, your brain may have done that process a little faster and concentrated on how all these words should be segregated into different categories.
Based on your concentration level, and the way your brain processed the word word in general, the sound of the word will let you know if it’s entirely figurative or not. And then it chooses a stage for how best to respond to the word, if you’re curious about it. This way, it lets you know whether it’s a particular information that needs to be valued or it needs to be understood.