"Dog." "Dog!" "Dog?" We know the first is a statement. The second a warning maybe. And the third a question.

Like facial expressions for emotions. Are there universal human facial expressions or voice modulations that show when we are asking a question? Or naming something. Or giving a warning. I imagine being able to distinguish these 3 things would be quite important for our ape-like ancestors.

In fact, do we share these with apes? When we try and teach apes words do we use things like pointing and intonation? Can they understand this?

  • $\begingroup$ The existence of universal facial and vocal expressions for emotions is highly controversial. The likelihood of a universal facial or vocal expression for asking questions is even less likely I'd imagine. $\endgroup$ – mrt Apr 23 '18 at 18:21
  • $\begingroup$ You started asking about facial expressions then added voice modulations which is a different kind of language cue. Voice modulation patterns can vary with different languages and cultures, and I am not sure but I believe the same applies to facial expressions. $\endgroup$ – Chris Rogers Apr 23 '18 at 23:24

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.