• Broca’s Area: portion of the left cerebral hemisphere involved in the control of speech.
  • Wernicke’s area: portion of the left cerebral hemisphere involved in the language understanding.

If damage were to occur to each area how would this effect an individuals language and speech?


  • Aphasia: is used to describe language deficits caused by brain damage.
  • Paul Broca (1860): damage to a specific area on the side of the left frontal lobe linked to expressive aphasia
  • Damage in left Broca’s area leads to difficulty enunciating words + speak slower however can still understand and comprehend

Carl Wernicke

  • Studied the effects of brain damage on language and speech
  • Noted that not all language impairments were the result of damage to Broca’s area
  • damage to another site in the cortex (in left hemisphere but in the temporal lobe) was linked to language disorder (receptive aphasia)

Wernicke-Geshwind Model

  • Broca’s area: articulator code that activate muscles to pronounce a word
  • Wernicke’s area: “auditory codes” and meaning of words stored.

Speaking A Heard Word

  • Process: Impulses from ear > Primary Auditory Area> Wernicke’s Area > Broca’s Area > Directs Motor Cortex

Speaking A Written Word

  • Process: Primary Visual Cortex > Angular Gyrus>Wernicke’s Areaà Broca’s Area >Primary Motor Cortex

The Importance of each area

  • Wernicke’s Area: no comprehension but can still articulate words properly however no significant meaning
  • Broca’s Area: little effect on comprehension or written language but disrupts speech production
  • Angular Gyrus: no longer have the ability to read but can comprehend speech and speak
  • Auditory Cortex: can read + speak but no comprehension of spoken speech
Cite this article as: William Anderson (Schoolworkhelper Editorial Team), "Language & the Brain," in SchoolWorkHelper, 2019, https://schoolworkhelper.net/language-the-brain/.

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