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Curr Opin Neurobiol. 2014 Oct;28:142-9. doi: 10.1016/j.conb.2014.07.005. Epub 2014 Jul 26.

The neuroanatomic and neurophysiological infrastructure for speech and language.

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Department of Psychology, New York University, 6 Washington Place, New York, NY 10003, United States; Department of Neuroscience, Max-Planck-Institute for Empirical Aesthetics, Grüneburgweg 14, 60322 Frankfurt, Germany. Electronic address:


New tools and new ideas have changed how we think about the neurobiological foundations of speech and language processing. This perspective focuses on two areas of progress. First, focusing on spatial organization in the human brain, the revised functional anatomy for speech and language is discussed. The complexity of the network organization undermines the well-regarded classical model and suggests looking for more granular computational primitives, motivated both by linguistic theory and neural circuitry. Second, focusing on recent work on temporal organization, a potential role of cortical oscillations for speech processing is outlined. Such an implementational-level mechanism suggests one way to deal with the computational challenge of segmenting natural speech.

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