Speeded Naming or Naming Speed? The Automatic Effect of Object Speed on Performance

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We test the hypothesis that naming an object depicted in a picture and reading aloud an object’s name are affected by the object’s speed. We contend that the mental representations of everyday objects and situations include their speed, and that the latter influences behavior in instantaneous and systematic ways. An important corollary is that high-speed objects are named faster than low-speed objects, although object speed is irrelevant to the naming task at hand. The results of a series of 7 studies with pictures and words support these predictions.

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