You drink. You drive. You go to jail. Where is recursion? ” (4.8MB .ppt file) This paper (final version in progress) was presented at the University of Massachusetts Conference on Recursion and will appear in the proceedings of that conference, edited by Profs. Margaret Speas and Thomas Roeper. In this paper I argue that recursion is not specific to language or grammar but is a generally useful cognitive tool. It is found in Pirahã discourse even though it is missing from its syntax.
A more general, yet concise statement of my views on recursion and the role of the Piraha language in the recursion debate is found in my invited opinion piece for WIREs: