An extremely interesting Turkish dialect has puzzled scientists for decades. The special language uses mostly sounds rather than words and according to expert analysis, it uses both regions of the brain for understanding, unlike other common languages. Turkish language renders words as something like music, as an attempt to break the barriers of communication from a distance. People have learned that the needs they have can be met by imagination and innovative techniques which turned out to be extremely complex methods of awakening our brains.
Neuroscientists have long understood that brain functions don’t divide clearly between the left and right hemispheres. The left hemisphere is known to play a dominant role in our understanding of language, no matter if the language is tonal or atonal, spoken or written, clicked with the tongue or written by hands. The right hemisphere is the more artsy part of our understanding, governing our general understanding of melody, rhythm and pitch.
A remote community in the valley of Kuskoy, Turkey, uses singsong resembling whistle which can travel over long distances and carries as much information as the spoken tongue is designed to deliver and encompass. People who have kept the special technique alive and kicking usually rely on their native Turkish language when close to one another but turn to whistling when distances between them are long, thus building active bridges of communication.
Scientists have tested cranial division of labor when it comes to this unique dialect by recruiting 31 volunteers, who were fluent both in spoken and whistled Turkish, listening to pairs of various syllables played simultaneously through headphones, one in each year. In the case of spoken Turkish, participants usually understood the syllable played through the right speaker, sign that the left hemisphere was helping with understanding and delivering the rational information. When the language turned to whistling, participants understood both syllables in equal measure, sign that both hemispheres were playing equal roles in the initial stages of understanding.
This is an extremely important insight when it comes to the complexity of spoken language and its capacity to trigger reactions in both sides of our brains. Although it may sound like an ancient, minimalistic way of communicating, the whistled language is extremely complex both in structure and meaning.
Unfortunately, the dialect is slowly disappearing, as people slowly give up learning and relate to more modern ways of communicating. However, in recent years, the remote village in Turkey has organized a whistling contest, to encourage cultural preservation as well as tourism. Maybe there is hope for the future.
Image Source: sciencedaily.com