Vakoch, Douglas A. and Lee H. Wurm
Emotional connotation in speech perception: Semantic associations in the general lexicon
Cognition & Emotion 11.4 (July 1997): 337-349.


Lexical access of emotion words has been shown to depend on 3 underlying dimensions (Evaluation, Activity, and Potency). The importance of these dimensions of emotional connotation was assessed during on-line speech perception of words drawn from the general lexicon. Lexical decision times were significantly predicted by main effects of Evaluation and Potency, as well as by interactions between Evaluation and Activity, and Evaluation and Potency. An evolutionary account is proposed to explain the differential processing of words in the general and affective lexica. Whereas the affective lexicon seems to be structured to avoid threats to the individual, the general lexicon appears to be designed for obtaining scarce but valuable resources.



Maintained by Francis F. Steen, Communication Studies, University of California Los Angeles