Creative language is an internally diverse, fuzzy-edged family of phenomena, relying on brain processes similar to those involved in literal language. I
Creative language is an internally diverse, fuzzy-edged family of phenomena, relying on brain processes similar to those involved in literal language. I describe experimental studies of how people understand different sorts of creative language phenomena, including both literal and figurative language. These data argue for a dynamic, context-sensitive language processor that exploits conceptual integration, or blending processes capable of handling a diverse array of figurative language. I go on to present a model of multi-modal discourse comprehension in which speakers utilize conceptual integration processes to combine linguistic information with visual-spatial and motoric information made available through gestures. I describe a number of event-related brain potential (ERP) studies that support the model, and consider the claim that artistic creativity is rooted in processes underlying multi-modal discourse comprehension.
Seana Coulson is a professor of cognitive science at UCSD. She heads the Brain and Cognition Lab where techniques from psycholinguistics and cognitive neuroscience are used to explore how people construct meaning.
(Friday) 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Anderson School of Management, Room C-301