News of the WeekCognition

Life Without Numbers in the Amazon

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Science  20 Aug 2004:
Vol. 305, Issue 5687, pp. 1093
DOI: 10.1126/science.305.5687.1093a

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In an article published online this week by Science (, a psycholinguist demonstrates that among members of a tiny tribe in the Amazon jungle that has no words for numbers beyond two, the ability to conceptualize numbers is no better than it is among pigeons, chimps, or human infants.