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September 23rd, 2022

BRAMS-CRBLM Lecture Series – Conference by Dr. Gregory Hickok, University of California, Irvine

Wednesday October 5th , 2022, from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m., followed by a cocktail.

Université de Montréal, Pavilion Marie-Victorin, Room D-427 

The recording of the lecture is available: here

Beyond Broca: Neural Architecture and Evolution of a Dual Motor Speech Coordination System

Abstract: Classical neural architecture models of speech production propose a single system centered on Broca’s area coordinating all the vocal articulators from lips to larynx. Modern evidence has challenged both the idea that Broca’s area is involved in motor speech coordination and that there is only one coordination network. Drawing on a wide range of evidence, here we propose a dual speech coordination model in which laryngeal control of pitch-related aspects of prosody and song are coordinated by a hierarchically organized dorsolateral system while supralaryngeal articulation at the phonetic/syllabic level is coordinated by a more ventral system posterior to Broca’s area. We argue further that these two speech production subsystems have distinguishable evolutionary histories and discuss the implications for models of language evolution

Bio: Dr. Hickok’s research focuses on the neurobiology of language, speech, and hearing with application to understanding the nature of acquired language disorders (aphasia). He has published over 190 scientific papers and book chapters and edited several book volumes on the neurobiology of language and hearing. His research uses a multi-method approach including functional MRI, electrocorticography, neuropsychology, and computational modeling, and has been funded by the National Institutes of Health for the last three decades.

Dr. Hickok was the inaugural Chair of the Society for the Neurobiology, founding director of UC Irvine’s Center for Cognitive Neuroscience and Center for Language Science, and Editor-in-Chief of Psychonomic Bulletin & Review from 2014-2019. He is the author of The Myth of Mirror Neurons: The Real Neuroscience of Communication and Cognition.

Dr. Hickok received his Ph.D. in Psychology and Linguistics at Brandeis University in 1991 and did post doctoral training in Cognitive Neuroscience at MIT and the Salk Institute for Biological Studies. He joined the faculty at UC Irvine in 1996 where he is currently Distinguished Professor of Cognitive Sciences and Language Science.

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BRAMS (International Laboratory for Brain, Music and Sound Research) is a unique laboratory dedicated to research excellence in the study of music and auditory cognition with a focus on neuroscience. BRAMS is located in Montreal and jointly affiliated with the University of Montreal and McGill University.


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