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Gesturing Meaning: Non-action Words Activate the Motor System.

Bach P, Griffiths D, Weigelt M, Tipper SP - Front Hum Neurosci (2010)

Bottom Line: These results were obtained even though the objects were not associated with any motor behaviors that would match the gestures the participants had to produce.Moreover, implied shape affected not only gesture selection processes but also their actual execution - as measured by the shape of hand motion through space - revealing intimate links between implied shape representation and motor output.The results are discussed in terms of ideomotor theories of action and perception, and provide one avenue for explaining the ubiquitous phenomenon of iconic gestures.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Psychology, Bangor University Bangor, UK.

ABSTRACT
Across cultures, speakers produce iconic gestures, which add - through the movement of the speakers' hands - a pictorial dimension to the speakers' message. These gestures capture not only the motor content but also the visuospatial content of the message. Here, we provide first evidence for a direct link between the representation of perceptual information and the motor system that can account for these observations. Across four experiments, participants' hand movements captured both shapes that were directly perceived, and shapes that were only implicitly activated by unrelated semantic judgments of object words. These results were obtained even though the objects were not associated with any motor behaviors that would match the gestures the participants had to produce. Moreover, implied shape affected not only gesture selection processes but also their actual execution - as measured by the shape of hand motion through space - revealing intimate links between implied shape representation and motor output. The results are discussed in terms of ideomotor theories of action and perception, and provide one avenue for explaining the ubiquitous phenomenon of iconic gestures.

No MeSH data available.


Response times (A) and movement times (B) in the location task in Experiment 2. Error bars show the standard error of the mean.
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Figure 3: Response times (A) and movement times (B) in the location task in Experiment 2. Error bars show the standard error of the mean.

Mentions: For RTs (Figure 3A), the analysis revealed no main effect of Gesture (F[1, 15] < 1) and no main effect of Shape (F[1, 15] < 1), but the critical interaction was significant (F[1, 15] = 6.14; p = 0.026; η2 = 0.291). When gesturing a square, participants were quicker to initiate the movement when responding to a word denoting a square than a round object (t[15] = 2.84; p = 0.012). When they gestured a circle, they were numerically quicker to initiate the movement when responding to a word denoting a round object than a square object (t[15] = 1.70; p = 0.11).


Gesturing Meaning: Non-action Words Activate the Motor System.

Bach P, Griffiths D, Weigelt M, Tipper SP - Front Hum Neurosci (2010)

Response times (A) and movement times (B) in the location task in Experiment 2. Error bars show the standard error of the mean.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2991204&req=5

Figure 3: Response times (A) and movement times (B) in the location task in Experiment 2. Error bars show the standard error of the mean.
Mentions: For RTs (Figure 3A), the analysis revealed no main effect of Gesture (F[1, 15] < 1) and no main effect of Shape (F[1, 15] < 1), but the critical interaction was significant (F[1, 15] = 6.14; p = 0.026; η2 = 0.291). When gesturing a square, participants were quicker to initiate the movement when responding to a word denoting a square than a round object (t[15] = 2.84; p = 0.012). When they gestured a circle, they were numerically quicker to initiate the movement when responding to a word denoting a round object than a square object (t[15] = 1.70; p = 0.11).

Bottom Line: These results were obtained even though the objects were not associated with any motor behaviors that would match the gestures the participants had to produce.Moreover, implied shape affected not only gesture selection processes but also their actual execution - as measured by the shape of hand motion through space - revealing intimate links between implied shape representation and motor output.The results are discussed in terms of ideomotor theories of action and perception, and provide one avenue for explaining the ubiquitous phenomenon of iconic gestures.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: School of Psychology, Bangor University Bangor, UK.

ABSTRACT
Across cultures, speakers produce iconic gestures, which add - through the movement of the speakers' hands - a pictorial dimension to the speakers' message. These gestures capture not only the motor content but also the visuospatial content of the message. Here, we provide first evidence for a direct link between the representation of perceptual information and the motor system that can account for these observations. Across four experiments, participants' hand movements captured both shapes that were directly perceived, and shapes that were only implicitly activated by unrelated semantic judgments of object words. These results were obtained even though the objects were not associated with any motor behaviors that would match the gestures the participants had to produce. Moreover, implied shape affected not only gesture selection processes but also their actual execution - as measured by the shape of hand motion through space - revealing intimate links between implied shape representation and motor output. The results are discussed in terms of ideomotor theories of action and perception, and provide one avenue for explaining the ubiquitous phenomenon of iconic gestures.

No MeSH data available.