Paul Broca, a young surgeon, eventually pinpointed the area of the brain involved in instances of conscious speech loss (circa 1864). It has since come to be known as Broca’s area. (Springer, Sally p., and Georg Deutsch. Left Brain, Right Brain. p 11-14. NY: W.H. Freeman and Co., 1997.)

Audible speech is produced in Broca’s Area (left frontal lobe). Heard speec is processed in Wernicke’s area (also located in the left hemisphere for most people). (Brynie, Faith Hickman. 101 Questions Your Brain Has Asked About Itself But Couldn’t Answer, Until Now. p 129-130. CT: Millbrook Press, 1998.)

Damage to Broca’s area can result in expressive dysphasia. Damage to Wernicke’s area can result in receptive dysphasia. (Greenfield, Susan, Con. Ed. Brain Power, Working out the Human Mind. p 55. The Ivy Press Limited, 1999.)

Broca’s area activates during audible speech or reading aloud. It is located toward the center of the frontal lobe in the left hemisphere. First however, the brain must assemble appropriate words in Wernicke’s area and then relay them to Broca’s area for transshipment to the motor cortex that controls speech production. (Restak, Richard, MD. The Secret Life of the Brain. p 42. Washington D.C.: The Dana Press and Joseph Henry Press, 2001.)

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