Eighty‐two participants listened to sentences and then judged whether two sequentially presented visual objects were the same. On critical trials, participants heard a sentence describe the motion of a ball toward or away from the observer (e.g., “The pitcher hurled the softball to you”). Seven hundred and fifty milliseconds after the offset of the sentence, a picture of an object was presented for 500 ms, followed by another picture. On critical trials, the two pictures depicted the kind of ball mentioned in the sentence. The second picture was displayed 175 ms after the first. Crucially, it was either slightly larger or smaller than the first picture, thus suggesting movement of the ball toward or away from the observer. Participants responded more quickly when the implied movement of the balls matched the movement described in the sentence. This result provides support for the viewthat language comprehension involves dynamic perceptual simulations.
Cognitive Science - A Multidisciplinary Journal – Wiley
Published: Jul 1, 2004
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