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Ph.D. Jacques Prieur


Department of Education and Psychology

Comparative Developmental Psychology

Project Director

Habelschwerdter Allee 45
Room JK 24/121d
14195 Berlin

I am a post-doctoral researcher working in Comparative Developmental Psychology. My main research topic concerns great apes’ multimodal communication and laterality.

My current research centres on mechanisms underlying signalling acquisition and development, with a special focus on gorillas’ gestural communication.

A comparative approach investigating the communication of our closest living relatives (different species of great apes) can help us understand the origins and evolution of human language. As several authors suggested that gestures played a substantial role in the emergence of human language, the gestural repertoires and their use by non-human primates have been intensively studied. Regarding mechanisms underlying gesture acquisition, recent findings on chimpanzee infants’ gestural development support the Social Negotiation hypothesis, which states that gestures are the output of social shaping, shared understanding of gestural meaning and mutual construction in real time by both interactants. However, this hypothesis has not yet been tested in detail.

The main aim of my current project is to study gorillas’ gestural communication and to explore the Social Negotiation hypothesis in detail.

If you are interested in my research in general or in a thesis or an internship on this or a related subject, please, feel free to contact me (jacques.prieur@fu-berlin.de).

Prieur, J., Barbu, S., Blois‐Heulin, C., & Lemasson, A. (2019). The origins of gestures and language: history, current advances and proposed theories. Biological Reviewshttps://doi.org/10.1111/brv.12576

Prieur J., Le Du G., Stomp M., Barbu S., & Blois-Heulin C. (2019b) Human laterality for manipulation and gestural communication: a study of beach-volleyball players during the Olympic Games. Laterality: Asymmetries of body, Brain and Cognition, 1-26.

Prieur, J., Lemasson, A., Barbu, S., & Blois‐Heulin, C. (2019a). History, development and current advances concerning the evolutionary roots of human right‐handedness and language: Brain lateralisation and manual laterality in non‐human primates. Ethology125(1), 1-28.

Prieur, J., Lemasson, A., Barbu, S., & Blois-Heulin, C. (2018e). Challenges Facing the Study of the Evolutionary Origins of Human Right-Handedness and Language. International Journal of Primatology, 1-25.

Prieur, J., Pika, S., Blois-Heulin, C., & Barbu, S. (2018d). Manual laterality in captive chimpanzees in the context of tool use: Influence of communication and of sociodemographic factors. Behavioural Processes, 157,610-624.

Prieur, J., Pika, S., Barbu, S., & Blois-Heulin, C. (2018c). Do Mechanical Effectiveness and Recipient Species Influence Intentional Signal Laterality in Captive Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes)?. International Journal of Primatology, 1-31.

Prieur, J., Pika, S., Barbu, S., & Blois-Heulin, C. (2018b). A multifactorial investigation of captive gorillas’ intraspecific gestural laterality. Laterality: Asymmetries of body, Brain and Cognition23(5), 538-575.

Prieur, J., Barbu, S., & Blois-Heulin, C. (2018a). Human laterality for manipulation and gestural communication related to 60 everyday activities: Impact of multiple individual-related factors. Cortex99, 118-134.

Prieur, J., Barbu, S., Blois-Heulin, C., & Pika, S. (2017c). Captive gorillas’ manual laterality: The impact of gestures, manipulators and interaction specificity. Brain and language175, 130-145.

Prieur J., Barbu S., & Blois-Heulin C. (2017b). Assessment and analysis of human laterality for manipulation and communication using the Rennes Laterality Questionnaire. Royal Society Open Science4(8), 170035.

Prieur J., Pika S., Barbu S., & Blois-Heulin C. (2017a). Intraspecific gestural laterality in chimpanzees and gorillas and the impact of social propensities. Brain Research1670, 52-67.

Prieur, J., Pika, S., Barbu, S., & Blois-Heulin, C. (2016b). Gorillas are right-handed for their most frequent intraspecific gestures. Animal Behaviour118, 165-170.

Prieur, J., Pika, S., Barbu, S., & Blois-Heulin, C. (2016a). A multifactorial investigation of captive chimpanzees' intraspecific gestural laterality. Animal Behaviour116, 31-43.

Prieur J. (2015). Chimpanzees' and gorillas' intraspecific gestural laterality: a multifactorial investigation Doctorate thesis, University of Rennes 1, France. (Manuscript freely available online at: http://www.theses.fr/2015REN1S056).

Detrain C. & Prieur J. (2014). Sensitivity and feeding efficiency of the black garden ant Lasius niger to sugar resources.Journal of Insect Physiology, 64, 74-80.

Meunier H., Prieur J., & Vauclair J. (2012). Olive baboons communicate intentionally by pointing. Animal Cognition, 16, 155-163.