NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1031115
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Jul
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1363-755X
Spatial Metaphor in Language Can Promote the Development of Cross-Modal Mappings in Children
Shayan, Shakila; Ozturk, Ozge; Bowerman, Melissa; Majid, Asifa
Developmental Science, v17 n4 p636-643 Jul 2014
Pitch is often described metaphorically: for example, Farsi and Turkish speakers use a "thickness" metaphor (low sounds are "thick" and high sounds are "thin"), while German and English speakers use a height metaphor ("low", "high"). This study examines how child and adult speakers of Farsi, Turkish, and German map pitch and thickness using a cross-modal association task. All groups, except for German children, performed significantly better than chance. German-speaking adults' success suggests the pitch-to-thickness association can be learned by experience. But the fact that German children were at chance indicates that this learning takes time. Intriguingly, Farsi and Turkish children's performance suggests that learning cross-modal associations can be boosted through experience with consistent metaphorical mappings in the input language.
Wiley-Blackwell. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8598; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A