THE ACTION-SENTENCE COMPATIBILITY EFFECT IN JAPANESE SENTENCES1


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Abstract

Summary.The action-sentence compatibility effect (ACE) is a phenomenon in which a reader's response to a sentence is made faster when there is congruity between the action described in the sentence and the action that makes up the response. Previous studies showed the ACE occurs in action-related sentences in several languages. However, all these were SVO (verb-object) languages, in which verbs are placed before object nouns; this order is reversed in SOV languages. Moreover, those studies investigated hand responses. This study assessed the existence of the ACE in Japanese, an SOV language, and in foot responses. 24 female participants judged the sensibility of Japanese sentences that described actions and responded with either their foot or hand as an effector. Reaction times were significantly faster when there was congruity between the effector described in the sentences and the effector actually used for the response. However, sentence dependency was also found in the foot responses.

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