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  Skating on thin ice: Literal meaning and understanding idioms in conversation
Titel: Skating on thin ice: Literal meaning and understanding idioms in conversation
Auteur: Gibbs, Raymond W.
Verschenen in: Discourse processes
Paginering: Jaargang 9 (1986) nr. 1 pagina's 17-30
Jaar: 1986-01
Inhoud: The question of whether people always analyze the literal meanings of idiomatic expressions, such as You can let the cat out of the bag, (meaning “You can reveal the secret”) was examined in two experiments. In Experiment 1 subjects read stories that ended with either literal or nonliteral uses of idomatic expressions. After reading each story, subjects made a sentence classification judgment for sentences that could be either a literal, nonliteral, or unrelated paraphrase of the last story sentence. Results indicated that subjects were primed on the nonliteral targets when they read idiomatic expressions, but were not primed on the literal targets. When subjects read literal uses of these expressions there was no priming on the literal targets. However, subjects' responses to the nonliteral targets were facilitated. Experiment 2 showed that these results were due to the way people actually process idiomatic expressions and cannot be attributed to some idiosyncratic aspect of the procedure. These results suggest that people do not ordinarily process the complete literal or compositional interpretations of idioms. Moreover, the results confirm the idea that people are automatically biased toward interpreting literal uses of idiomatic expressions conventionally, as idioms, before deriving their intended literal meanings.
Uitgever: Routledge
Bronbestand: Elektronische Wetenschappelijke Tijdschriften

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