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SAINT PETERSBURG STATE UNIVERSITY DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHOLOGY Motor Components in Mental Imagery Underlying Comprehension of Text Olga V. Scherbakova

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Presentation on theme: "SAINT PETERSBURG STATE UNIVERSITY DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHOLOGY Motor Components in Mental Imagery Underlying Comprehension of Text Olga V. Scherbakova"— Presentation transcript:

1 SAINT PETERSBURG STATE UNIVERSITY DEPARTMENT OF PSYCHOLOGY Motor Components in Mental Imagery Underlying Comprehension of Text Olga V. Scherbakova

2 Basic points 1)thinking is provided by mental operations upon mental objects. Mental operation is an action which plays the structuring role in mental space composing (Fauconnier, Turner, 2006; Kholodnaya, 2002 (in Russian)) and leads to the new meaning uprising 2) thinking is usually being performed in a mental space which is built up for the purposes of thinking and contains mental objects (mental representations, symbols, concepts) 3) mental imagery is an essential component of thinking (Bartlett, 1958; Paivio, 1965; Johnson, 1987; Kosslyn, Ganis, Thompson, 2003)

3 The questions are: How do mental imagery help us in thinking and text comprehension? What are the certain ways of imagery influences upon understanding?

4 Verbal joke as a special form of intellectual task: -ecological -motivates to understand -involves both cognitive and emotional abilities -does not look as a problem to be solved

5 Binary cognitive structure of a comical text contxt Context А MS 1а MS 3а МS 2а Context В MS 1 b МS 3b МS 2b Key word

6 Methods The set of 7 verbal jokes with increasing difficulty. Indepth interview, 37 participants (male and female aged 17 to 54). Verbal reports and depictions. Qualitative psychological microanalysis of verbal reports and graphycal representations.

7 Joke Soup A wife tells to her husband: - Darling, Im gonna visit the girl next door, itll take me 5 minutes. And you, wouldnt you mind stiring the soup every half an hour while Im away?

8 The graphical representation for the key idea of time stretching: from 5 minutes to half an hour

9 Joke Doctor One man came to a surgery with the complaint to a stomach ache. And the surgeon told him: since you have a stomach ache, Ill cut your ears off. The poor man got afraid of this decision and then went to a therapist saying: - Doctor, you know, that surgeon, he was really freaky: I told him about my stomach ache and he advised me to cut off my ears! And the therapist answered: - Dont you listen to these surgeons! Cutting off this, cutting off that – thats the only thing they are good at! Listen, Ill give you a pill – when you take it, your ears will immediately fall off by themselves!

10 The graphical representation for the key idea of ears falling apart

11 Conclusions 1)Mental imagery that emerges during thinking is organized in generalized imagery schemas. Such schemas often include motor components that function as interiorized and archived embodied programs for thinking.

12 Conclusions 2) These kinaesthetical representations of the text look like compressed thinking operations that one is hardly aware of. Since thinking is an essentially active process which reorganizes and revises mental representations of situations, motor components of understanding seem to be the thinking itself.

13 Conclusions 3) Motor components of mental imagery explicates the dynamics of understanding and contains the information about main strategies of imagery reconstructions.

14 Thank you!


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