Nim Chimpsky (November 19, – March 10, ) was a chimpanzee that was the subject . H.S. Terrace, in his article “How Nim Chimpsky Changed My Mind”, quotes Nim’s longest sentence as the word-long “Give orange me give eat. the lead investigator, announced he had changed his mind (always an The film is based on a book, Nim Chimpsky: The Chimp Who Would. If Herbert Terrace had his way, before any discussion about his research in the But to Terrace’s mind, the tendency can cloud people’s judgment as it relates to a research study with a chimpanzee named Nim Chimpsky (a nod to Chomsky.

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Roger Foutsof the Washoe Project, also claims that Chaanged Nim was poorly conducted because it did not use strong enough methodology to avoid such comparisons and efficiently defend against them.

Nim Chimpsky

We shouldn’t be sentimental about this, because mjnd understood that language, if you can call it that. My Conversations with Chimpanzees. The E-mail message field is required. Critics assert that Terrace used his analysis to destroy the movement of ape-language research.

Herbert Terrace Studies Evolution of Language | Columbia College Today

Project Nima documentary film by James Marsh about the Nim study, explores the story and the wealth of archival footage to consider ethical issues, the emotional experiences of the trainers and the chimpanzee, and minx deeper issues the experiment raised. He has used archive footage, photographs and interviews with those who cared for Nim to create a tribute to the chimp and his turbulent life.


There were lots of children. Attention was particularly focused on Nim’s ability to make different responses to different sequences of signs and to emit different sequences in order to communicate different meanings.

Terrace and his colleagues aimed to use more thorough experimental techniques, and the intellectual discipline of the experimental analysis of behaviorso that the linguistic abilities of the apes could be put on a more chanegd footing. But I don’t think I’m making overt judgments about people’s behaviour.

Follow Today in History. The validity of the study is mj, as Terrace argued that all ape-language studies, including Project Nim, were based on misinformation from the chimps.

Sebeok also made pointed comparisons of Washoe with Clever Hans. Please enter your name.

How Nim Chimpsky changed my mind

The Legacy of the Ape Language Experiments. Cancel Forgot your password? But I put his actions in the context of the people who were doing most of the work, and therefore looked at those power relations between him and women such as Laura Ann [Petitto] and Joyce [Butler], and how those played out. Citations are based on reference standards. Loading comments… Trouble loading?

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Nim’s use of language was strictly pragmatic, as a means of obtaining an outcome, unlike a human child’s, which can serve to generate or express meanings, thoughts or ideas. Young Nim, adorably clothed in outfits more suited to a toddler than a baby chimpanzee, seems perfectly designed to excite chimlsky of affection and protectiveness.

Nim Chimpsky: the chimp they tried to turn into a human | Film | The Guardian

In the s, linguist Noam Chomsky argued that children understand such differences even when hearing sentences for the first time. Please enter the message.


Who could begrudge him those? Terrace’s skeptical approach to the claims that chimpanzees could learn and understand sign language led to heated disputes with M and Beatrix Gardnerwho initiated the Washoe Project.

So it does suggest that humans are utterly made for language. So you’re dealing with powerful memories and it’s your job to give those memories the right context and to elicit them in a respectful way.

Apes lack the vocal cords necessary to produce human sounds, so they were taught to use sign language or visual symbols. Critics of primate linguistic studies include Thomas SebeokAmerican semiotician and investigator of nonhuman communication systems, who wrote:. Terrace with the linguistic analysis headed up by psycholinguist Thomas Bever. Perhaps we can never know how a chimpanzee sees the world, or how a dog sees the world.

Nim developed friendships with several of the workers at the Institute of Primate Studies, and learned a few more signs, including a sign named “stone smoke time now” which indicated that Nim wanted to smoke marijuana. Project Nim was an attempt to go further than Project Washoe.

By many accounts, it was also a shoddy project. American Sign Language Yerkish. Search WorldCat Find items in libraries near you. The results, though questionable, were intriguing: