A naive observer might say this is a group of people strung out one after another, but someone more familiar with lines will know there is some kind of more complex social hierarchy here. Getting to handle such things was part of our history..
The current issue of the online journal Biolinguistics is devoted to the subject of recursion, a procedure that enables the creation of sentences of indeterminate length. Last week's post discussed an article that doubts "full-blown recursion" is part of language. Another important paper in the issue is The Neural Basis of Recursion and Complex Syntactic Hierarchy by Angela D. Friederici, Jörg Bahlmann, Roland Friedrich & Michiru Makuuchi. Based on a series of experiments, it concludes that hierarchical thinking is common to many tasks besides syntax. Most striking is the evidence that mathematical thinking uses different parts of the brain from syntactical thinking and therefore (says I) evidence of unbounded recursion in mathematical reasoning cannot be used to support unbounded recursion in "the language faculty."