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ERIC Number: EJ952319
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 32
ISSN: ISSN-0163-853X
Processing Causality in Narrative Events: Temporal Order Matters
Briner, Stephen W.; Virtue, Sandra; Kurby, Christopher A.
Discourse Processes: A Multidisciplinary Journal, v49 n1 p61-77 2012
To successfully comprehend narrative text, readers often make inferences about different causes and effects that occur in a text. In this study, participants read texts in which events related to a cause were presented before an effect (i.e., the forward causal condition), texts in which an effect was presented before the events related to a cause (i.e., the backward causal condition), or control (i.e., the non-causal) texts. Lexical decision response times to cause-relevant words were faster in the forward causal condition than in the control condition and were faster in the backward causal condition than in the control condition. Importantly, response times were faster in the forward causal condition than in the backward causal condition. These effects were unrelated to individual differences in reading ability. These results suggest that readers process causal relations regardless of temporal order but that causal events presented in backward temporal order may be processed more slowly compared to causal events presented in forward temporal order. (Contains 3 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A