One of the key questions in cognitive psychology is how people represent knowledge about concepts such as football or love. Some researchers have proposed that concepts are represented in human memory by the sensorimotor systems that underlie interaction with the outside world. These theories represent developments in cognitive science to view cognition no longer in terms of abstract information processing, but in terms of perception and action. In other words, cognition is grounded in embodied experiences. Studies show that sensory perception and motor actions support understanding of words and object concepts. Moreover, even understanding of abstract and emotion concepts can be shown to rely on more concrete, embodied experiences. Finally, language itself can be shown to be grounded in sensorimotor processes. This book brings together theoretical arguments and empirical evidence from several key researchers in this field to support this framework.
• Embodied cognition • Sensorimotor basis of conceptual representations • Sensorimotor basis of language comprehension
List of contributors; 1. Introduction to Grounding Cognition: the Role of Perception and Action in Memory, Language, and Thinking Diane Pecher and Rolf A. Zwaan; 2. Object concepts and action Anna M. Borghi; 3. Constraints on spatial language comprehension: function and geometry Laura A. Carlson and Ryan Kenny; 4. Embodiment in metaphorical imagination Raymond W. Gibbs, Jr.; 5. Passionate thoughts: the emotional embodiment of moral concepts Jesse J. Prinz; 6. Grounding language in bodily states: the case for emotion Arthur M. Glenberg, David Havas, Raymond Becker and Mike Rinck; 7. Situating abstract concepts Lawrence W. Barsalou and Katja Wiemer-Hastings; 8. Dynamicity, fictivity, and scanning: the imaginative basis of logic and linguistic meaning Ronald W. Langacker; 9. The emergence of grammar from perspective Brian MacWhinney; 10. Embodied sentence comprehension Rolf A. Zwaan and Carol J. Madden; 11. On the perceptual-motor and image-schematic infrastructure of language Michael J. Spivey, Daniel C. Richardson, and Monica Gonzalez-Marquez; 12. Connecting concepts to each other and the world Robert L. Goldstone, Ying Feng, and Brian J. Rogosky; Indices.
Review of the hardback: '… the chapters of this book provide convincing evidence that higher cognitive processes draw heavily upon perceptual and motor knowledge … [it] allows readers to appreciate the diversity of ideas that fall under the embodied view of cognition …' Applied Cognitive Psychology