Words index Vivian Cook
a loss for words
The loss of the ability to use words is called aphasia. Since the mid 19th century this has been linked to damage in the brain, chiefly in two areas on the left side of the brain named after their discoverers Paul Broca and Carl Wernicke.
The damage to these areas results in different types of word loss. Here is
a patient with damage to Brocaís area answering a question, reported by Howard
Doctor: Could you tell me, Mr Ford, what youíve been doing in the hospital?
Patient: Yes. Sure. Me go, er. uh, P.T. nine oícot, speech ... two times ... read ... wr ... ripe, er, rike, er, write ... practice ... getting better.
seems a string of content words; in other words the nouns and verbs are mostly
left but the organisation has gone along with the structure words like Ďofí,
the form of the pronouns I.
Here is a patient with Wernickeís area damage answering a similar question:
Doctor: What brings you to the hospital?
Patient: Boy Iím sweating. Iím awful nervous, you know, once in a while I get caught up, I canít mention the tarripoi, a month ago, quite a little, Iíve done a lot well, I impose a lot, while, on the other hand, you know what I mean, I have to run around, look it over, trebbin and all that sort of stuff.
recently it was believed that damage to the right side of the brain did not
affect language. However the right brain handles emotions. In English right
damage can affect your ability to handle emotional aspects of language such as the
interpretation of emotion, allegedly leading to a higher divorce rate in right
Source Howard Gardner