The question of whether language makes you think the way you do is ages old and can inspire heated arguments between linguists.  No matter which side of the argument you fall on, it appears there are certain cultures whose narrow color language may prevent them from seeing as many colors as those with a broader color vocabulary.

The Russian language, for example, has more words for the color blue, and it is believed they can perceive more shades of blue than their English-speaking counterparts.  By contrast, the Himba tribe of Northern Namibia only have 5 words for color groups, which may hinder their ability to perceive different colors.

Colors are nothing more than perceived light photons, and you didn’t start to perceive colors until after you began acquiring language as an infant anyway.  Learn more about how language affects perception of colors from this infographic.  Is that blue shirt you’re wearing really blue after all?

behr-color PNG


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