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An “Elevator Speech” for Stuttering

With the discovery and recent verification, over the past 10-12 years, of neurological correlates for childhood stuttering in 1) white matter fiber tracts from premotor planning and linguistic areas of the left hemisphere (Chang 2009, etc.) and 2) genetic lysosomal disorders in neurons (waste processing systems) (Drayna, NIH), it is possible to predict emotional reactions […]

Yes, Alan Turing Did Stutter

Despite appearances to the contrary in the film The Imitation Game, the latest of several bio-films and plays about Alan Turing, the brilliant mathematician and computer pioneer did have a quite-noticeable stutter much of the time. How do I know? Because I saw a film of him lecturing that was spooled at the computer exhibit […]

Stuttering Genetics and the Hippocampus

In my last long-ago post, I brought up the fact that the recent NIH study of stuttering genetics suggested that mutations in 3 genes associated with stuttering in 9% of people who stutter were expressed in the mammalian hippocampus, a brain structure not commonly associated with speech.

How can that be?

To date, all of […]

The King’s Speech: Looking Back at An Initial Take

What follows is an old blog that never got posted, offered for what it’s worth:

Finally got to see The King’s Speech at its opening here in Denver, 12:45 pm on Christmas Day.

Some initial observations:

1. The production is impressive; actors are immersed in their roles; the King’s stuttering is well done by Colin […]

Reason for Hope (Outside the Box)

In the last episode, I discussed how the authors of a paper on the neurology of stuttering were trying to use a model of normal speech control created by Jurgens to describe and explain stuttered speech. This led to the authors concluding that stuttering was primarily caused by brain “structural and functional abnormalities,” (disordered cerebral […]

Stuttering Inside the Box

Long time since I blogged here, probably because I need to blog shorter!

Sometimes, things are so obvious that they’re difficult to see. I was looking over the Jurgens model of speech production, which has been used as a road map to guide thinking about speech control since it was published in 2002, wondering why […]

Promising Research Takes “The Path Most Traveled?”

Two significant research studies (paper 1; paper 2) by a Chinese team led by C. Lu have provided additional evidence that weaknesses or characteristics in the connectivity of circuits between brain activity centers involved in speech-motor movements is a key to understanding stuttering. However, as in previous work by Sommers (2002), there is no consideration […]

Enabling the Iceberg?

A new stuttering-specific spin has been proposed in the increasingly tiresome controversy about the use of “person first language” versus “calling a spade a spade:” the notion that using the moniker “person who stutters” instead of “stutterer” may “enable the [stuttering] iceberg.”

While most readers are probably familiar with the person first language (or PFL) […]

Awareness of Stuttering

The poet W. S. Merwin used an epigraph from Heraclitus in his fine early collection “The Lice” that has since reminded me of the value of becoming more and more impeccable (not “perfect”) about catching stutters and cancelling them:

“All men are deceived by the appearances of things, even Homer himself, who was the wisest […]

Fear Conditioning Erased in Mice

[Blogger note: The title of this post has been changed to more accurately reflect the subject of interest]

My friend John Paskievich sent me a link to a fascinating article in ScienceNOW.

The article describes a research study that demonstrated the selective erasure of fear memories in the lateral amygdala of mice, using a genetically […]