A Translation of Finkelnburg’s (1870) Lecture on Aphasia as “Asymbolia” with Commentary On March 21, 1870, Dr. D. C. Finkelnburg addressed the Society of the Lower Rhine in Bonn on the popular topic of aphasia. He challenged the prevailing view that aphasia was a disorder of speech only and the emphasis that had been given to the issue of cerebral localization. The ... Articles
Articles  |   May 01, 1979
A Translation of Finkelnburg’s (1870) Lecture on Aphasia as “Asymbolia” with Commentary
 
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Articles   |   May 01, 1979
A Translation of Finkelnburg’s (1870) Lecture on Aphasia as “Asymbolia” with Commentary
Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, May 1979, Vol. 44, 156-168. doi:10.1044/jshd.4402.156
History: Received July 21, 1978 , Accepted October 25, 1978
 
Journal of Speech and Hearing Disorders, May 1979, Vol. 44, 156-168. doi:10.1044/jshd.4402.156
History: Received July 21, 1978; Accepted October 25, 1978

On March 21, 1870, Dr. D. C. Finkelnburg addressed the Society of the Lower Rhine in Bonn on the popular topic of aphasia. He challenged the prevailing view that aphasia was a disorder of speech only and the emphasis that had been given to the issue of cerebral localization. The disorder, he pointed out, not only extended beyond the speech modality to include verbal comprehension, reading, and writing but also included many extraverbal disturbances of symbolic usage. In support of his argument, he presented five detailed case studies of aphasics (two with autopsy data) who demonstrated a variety of verbal and extraverbal deficits. Because the term aphasia referred specifically to speech disturbance and inadequately signified the full extent of the disorder, Finkelnburg proposed the more generic term asymbolia as a more accurate representation of the nature of the disorder. This translation makes available a previously inaccessible but historically important and still viable contribution to the study of the nature of aphasia.

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