ERIC Number: ED215305
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1982-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
The Emergence of the Literal-Metaphorical-Anomalous Distinction in Young Children.
Vosniadou, Stella; Ortony, Andrew
A study investigated children's ability to distinguish among literal, metaphorical, and anomalous comparisons. The 100 subjects, equal numbers of three-, four-, five-, and six-year-old children and college students, completed similarity statements by choosing one of two words from (1) a metaphorical/literal word pair, (2) a literal/anomalous word pair, and (3) a metaphorical/anomalous word pair. Selections were also made in a categorization task. The results suggested that even the youngest children could distinguish meaningful comparisons from anomalous ones. It appeared that four-year-old and older children were aware that the terms from the metaphorical comparisons, unlike the literal ones, belonged to different conventional categories. These results were interpreted as indicating that as early as four years of age children have some rudimentary metaphorical competence. (Author/RL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Academy of Education, Washington, DC.; National Inst. of Education (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Illinois Univ., Urbana. Center for the Study of Reading.; Bolt, Beranek and Newman, Inc., Cambridge, MA.