Language and Affordances #719374

di Irene De Felice

Pisa University Press

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Over the last two decades the concept of affordance, which was first introduced in the field of ecological psychology, has steadily gained ground in cognitive science and neuroscience, particularly within the context of embodied theories of cognition, which share the idea that fundamental cognitive functions, such as those supporting thought and language, are deeply influenced by our bodily nature and by our concrete experience of the world. However, the notion of affordance has been little explored from a specifically linguistic perspective.
The research presented in this volume investigates whether, and to what extent, linguistic production reflects affordances, here understood as the neural representations of possible interactions with objects.
The investigation builds on two experiments conducted by the author on the affordance of graspability, one entailing an action description task and the other a property generation task. The results of the analysis carried out on the data collected in these experiments are discussed using a multidisciplinary approach. The findings demonstrate that there is a close connection between linguistic production and affordances, and that the latter also play an important role in the lexico-semantic representations of action-related words denoting graspable objects
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Irene De Felice