Friday, 11 October 2013

Are abstract action words embodied? An fMRI investigation at the interface between language and motor cognition.

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Katrin Sakreida et al. (2013)




This substantial fMRI study was very interesting to read. Recently my own thoughts about language are  leaning towards the embodied cognition camp as I am increasingly struggling with the idea that higher processing of language should be considered as 'pure thought'. I don't see any function, cognitive process of the brian to be independent of each other and working in isolation. What I see is an establishing idea that the brain is a network (a really complicated one) that includes a multitude of sensory facets that in themselves compose our conscious experiences. Is it a false dichotomy when one segregates higher level comprehension from basic low level discriminative processing? I think the embodied view of the brain provides a way of avoiding having to make such a distinction. Here, the comprehension of language is claimed to be really shaped by the body, the visuo-motor system for example.