The influence of congruency proportion, target eccentricity, and valence strength on the spatial-valence metaphoric congruency effect in a word valence judgment task
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AbstractIn a word valence judgment task, positive words (e.g., excellence) are judged faster when presented at the top (congruent position) than at the bottom of the screen (incongruent position), whereas the opposite pattern occurs for negative words (e.g., disaster). This spatial-valence metaphoric congruency effect reflects top-positive/bottom-negative metaphoric association and may be attributed to at least three possible mechanisms: spreading activation between spatial and valence concepts (activation account), epistemic function that a conceptual metaphor serves to reduce the uncertainty associated with valence concepts (epistemic account), and/or the extent to which spatial-valence metaphoric association is relevant to task demand (relevance account). In three experiments, we manipulated congruency proportion, target eccentricity, and valence strength in a word valence judgment task to test these three possible accounts. Results showed that the metaphoric congruency effect was larger when a high (vs. equal) proportion of targets appears in congruent, relative to incongruent, position, and for targets with strong (vs. weak) valence. However, the effect in reaction time measure was not modulated by whether the target appeared in the position being near vs. far away from the center of the screen. The overall findings are better accommodated by the relevance account. The implications of the current findings on other theoretical accounts, such as Conceptual Metaphor Theory and polarity correspondence account, are also discussed.
All Author(s) ListTse CS, Huang YL, Zeng TR, Zhou YY, Chan YL
Journal namePsychological Research
Volume Number85
Issue Number7
Pages2610 - 2635
LanguagesEnglish-United Kingdom
Web of Science Subject CategoriesPsychology, Experimental;Psychology

Last updated on 2021-13-10 at 23:58