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Behavior

Mothers Speak Baby Talk Regardless of Their Language

New research finds that the nature of baby-directed speech is different than adult-directed speech, suggesting a universal language of “motherese.”

Published On 10/16/2017
4:06 PM EDT
L L istening to baby talk can be annoying for adults, but it plays an important role in learning and understanding language structure for infants. Princeton researchers have quantified the vocal shifts in several different languages and found that mothers, regardless of whether they speak English, Spanish, Mandarin, or Hungarian, talk to their babies in a similar way. The new study on “motherese” appears in the journal Current Biology.