The Bilingual Brain Publication date : May 25, 2022
Albert Costa was a Spanish scholar of neuropsychology and linguistics at Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona. He passed away unexpectedly in 2018.
Mastering a language gives us formidable powers of expression and communication. What about mastering two languages? More than half of the world’s population is bilingual. How do two languages coexist in the same brain? What are the advantages of bilingualism? What constraints does it impose? How do we learn – and forget – a language?
In this book, Albert Costa shares twenty years of work and experience in linguistic science. The Bilingual Brain draws on studies and examples from numerous countries and languages to examine how bilingualism affects everyday life, from infancy to old age. Costa describes the feat of learning a language, the fact that babies can distinguish between languages mere hours after being born, as well as how accents affect the way we perceive others, why bilinguals are better as resolving conflicts, and how we make decisions differently depending on the language we are using: in a foreign language, our decision-making is less instinctive and more rational. Surprises abound.