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ERIC Number: EJ1072099
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004
Pages: 12
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: EISSN-1539-4352
Verbal Understanding and Pavlovian Processes
Tonneau, Fran├žois
Behavior Analyst Today, v5 n2 p158-169 2004
The behavioral processes through which people react appropriately to verbal descriptions remain poorly understood. I argue here that these processes are Pavlovian. Common objections to a Pavlovian account of symbolic behavior evidence a lack of familiarity with the relevant data or misunderstandings of operant theory. Although much remains to be done to explore the relation between verbal understanding and simpler forms of Pavlovian conditioning, the similarity of these two sets of phenomena has received increasing support in recent years. The difficulties of operant principles in accounting for symbolic behavior have a more general implication: Operant models, which focus on the maintenance of responding, must incorporate principles of behavioral induction that explain the origins of novel environment-behavior relations. Pavlovian processes are likely to contribute.
Joseph Cautilli, Ph.D. & The Behavior Analyst Online Organization. 535 Queen Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147-3220. Tel: 215-462-6737; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A