No specific role for the manual motor system in processing the meanings of words related to the hand

Postle, Natasha, Ashton, Roderick, McFarland, Ken and de Zubicaray, Greig I. (2013) No specific role for the manual motor system in processing the meanings of words related to the hand. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 7 JAN: 11.1-11.17. doi:10.3389/fnhum.2013.00011

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Author Postle, Natasha
Ashton, Roderick
McFarland, Ken
de Zubicaray, Greig I.
Title No specific role for the manual motor system in processing the meanings of words related to the hand
Journal name Frontiers in Human Neuroscience   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1662-5161
Publication date 2013-02
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.3389/fnhum.2013.00011
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 7
Issue JAN
Start page 11.1
End page 11.17
Total pages 17
Place of publication Lausanne, Switzerland
Publisher Frontiers Research Foundation
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Abstract The present study explored whether semantic and motor systems are functionally interwoven via the use of a dual-task paradigm. According to embodied language accounts that propose an automatic and necessary involvement of the motor system in conceptual processing, concurrent processing of hand-related information should interfere more with hand movements than processing of unrelated body-part (i.e., foot, mouth) information. Across three experiments, 100 right-handed participants performed left- or right-hand tapping movements while repeatedly reading action words related to different body-parts, or different body-part names, in both aloud and silent conditions. Concurrent reading of single words related to specific body-parts, or the same words embedded in sentences differing in syntactic and phonological complexity (to manipulate context-relevant processing), and reading while viewing videos of the actions and body-parts described by the target words (to elicit visuomotor associations) all interfered with right-hand but not left-hand tapping rate. However, this motor interference was not affected differentially by hand-related stimuli. Thus, the results provide no support for proposals that body-part specific resources in cortical motor systems are shared between overt manual movements and meaning-related processing of words related to the hand.
Keyword Action representations
Embodied language
Motor system
Word meaning
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes Article 11

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Psychology Publications
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Citation counts: TR Web of Science Citation Count  Cited 12 times in Thomson Reuters Web of Science Article | Citations
Scopus Citation Count Cited 11 times in Scopus Article | Citations
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Created: Sun, 10 Mar 2013, 00:51:23 EST by System User on behalf of Examinations