Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Short Communication

Good intentions and bad words

Frank C. Keil a1
a1 Department of Psychology, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06520


Bloom makes a strong case that word meaning acquisition does not require a dedicated word learning system. This conclusion, however, does not argue against a dedicated language acquisition system for syntax, morphology, and aspects of semantics. Critical questions are raised as to why word meaning should be so different from other aspects of language in the course of acquisition.