In this study we investigated whether objects and their name evoke the activation of the same motor programs. In the first experiment participants had to make speeded responses based on the category of an object. They had to signal whether an object, presented visually, either within or outside their reachable space, was natural or manufactured, by making reach-to-precision or reach-to-power grasp responses. We found a compatibility effect between the response required by task, and the grip evoked by the object, for reachable space only. Nevertheless, this finding holds for artefacts and not for natural objects. In the second experiment, participants had to make reach-to-precision or reach-to-power grasp responses when deciding whether an object, presented either within or outside their reachable space, was congruent with a previously displayed word. In this case we found a compatibility effect between the response required by task and the grip evoked by the object’s name, however this effect was not limited by participants’ reaching range. Our data suggest that objects and objects’ name likely correspond to different motor representations. That is, while the former seem to house both stable (i.e., shape and size) and temporary (i.e., orientation and distance with respect to the perceiver) action-relevant information, the latter seem to house only stable action-relevant information.
Objects and their nouns in peripersonal space / Ferri, Francesca; Riggio, Lucia; Gallese, Vittorio; Costantini, Marcello. - In: NEUROPSYCHOLOGIA. - ISSN 0028-3932. - 49(2011), pp. 3519-3524. [10.1016/j.neuropsychologia.2011.09.001]
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