1. Honeck, Richard P.
A proverb in mind: The cognitive science of proverbial wit and wisdom. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 1997. Abstract.
2. Honeck, Richard P. Introduction: Figurative language and cognitive science--past, present and future. Metaphor & Symbolic Activity, 1996, v11 (n1):1-15.
Briefly reviews the impact of cognitive science on the study of figurative language and introduces 4 companion articles . The intellectual background for psychological inquiry into the topic in the 1970s is described, and a synopsis of various cognitive science contributions up to the present is provided. After a focus on the contemporary view of the impact of cognitive science on figurative language as exemplified by the companion articles, a final section considers possibilities for the future.
3. Honeck, Richard P.; Temple, Jon G. Proverbs: The Extended Conceptual Base and Great Chain
Metaphor & Symbolic Activity, 1994, v9 (n2):85-112.
Compares 2 theories of proverb comprehension, the Great Chain Metaphor Theory (GCMT) and the Extended Conceptual Base Theory (ECBT). The operation of the theories in 2 paradigmatic situations, an irrelevant-context situation in which a proverb is uttered without any supporting context, and a relevant-context situation in which such context is present, is described. The theories are compared with respect to 5 issues (i.e., perspective, creativity, automatic vs controlled processing, pragmatics, and empirical adequacy). Proverb comprehension is better explained by the process and problem-solving orientation of the ECBT than by the structuralist and special mechanisms orientation of the GCMT.
4. Honeck, Richard P. Dreams, meaning, and prolucidity: An information processing
Journal of Mental Imagery, 1992 Spring-Summer, v16 (n1-2):131-145.
Presents a critique on the 10 major assumptions of A. Ahsen (see PA, Vol 79:33983) in his work on prolucid dreaming, arguing that Ahsen's study falls short of basic standards for scientific acceptability. Ahsen provides no evidence that his (or his Subjects') interpretations of dreams have any validity. Ahsen shows no evidence that dreams have a unique logic or that waking logic conforms to Aristotelian logic. Likewise, no proof is offered that the use of parental filters while interpreting a dream renders the interpretation any more valid. Other criticisms involve his use of anecdotal evidence and the need to incorporate the psychology of waking cognition.
5. Temple, Jon G.; Honeck, Richard P.
Literal versus nonliteral reminders for proverbs.
Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1992 Jan, v30 (n1):67-70.
Examined the relationship between the degree of figurative understanding and the effectiveness of different kinds of prompts for proverb recall in 48 university students who wrote interpretations of unfamiliar proverbs. Although it was expected that higher levels of understanding, as indexed by Subjects' interpretations, would make the more abstract prompts more effective, this was not found. Results suggest that Subjects who did not have a good understanding of the proverbs were able to use the abstract prompts to recall the proverbs via a compensatory recall strategy.
6. Honeck, Richard P.; Temple, Jon G.
Metaphor, expertise, and a PEST: Comments on the contributions to this special issue.
Special Issue: Expertise and metaphor.
Metaphor & Symbolic Activity, 1992, v7 (n3-4):237-252.
Basic functions of metaphor are described, and the intentionally naive cognitive discovery hypothesis is proposed. This hypothesis holds that individuals will use novel metaphor when confronted with unfamiliar problems. Complications of the hypothesis lead to the PEST model, which stipulates 4 factors (problem, expertise, social situation, and task) that should be addressed in studies in the area. This model is used in reviewing articles by F. S. Bellezza; I. A. Zualkernan and P. E. Johnson; J. F. Voss et al; and N. J. Cooke and M. C. Bartha (see PA, Vol 80:32200, 32180, 33148, and 32038, respectively), but theoretical issues are raised as well, such as whether the term metaphor needs to be invoked, an issue that appears to hinge on the larger issue of the relationship between language and thought.
7. Honeck, Richard P.; Firment, Michael.
Accessing abstract categories.
Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1989 May, v27 (n3):206-208.
26 university students learned categories based on sentences that illustrated the figurative meaning of proverbs. The categories were either narrow, based on sentences that sampled similar contexts, or wide, otherwise. Width was a within-S factor in Exp 1 and a between-Subjects factor in Exp 2. In general, transfer performance on novel examples suggested that width produces more flexible, decontextualized mental representations, but that Subjects can overcome narrow experience.
8. Feldhaus, Robert O.; Honeck, Richard P.
The conceptual basis of graded categories.
Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 1989 May, v18 (n3):271-288.
Tested 2 implications of the Conceptual Base View of Categorization (R. P. Honeck et al; see PA, Vol 73:5459): (1) To the extent that Subjects form similar schemas or conceptual bases, their judgments of the exemplariness of various events should agree; and, (2) whether a conceptual base is framed from verbal or pictorial inputs should not matter. To test these implications, 80 college students were provided different reference stimuli as guides for ranking a set of sentences in terms of how well they illustrated the deeper meaning of the reference stimuli. These stimuli were an excellent verbal instance of the figurative meaning of a proverb, a poor verbal instance of this meaning, an abstract picture representing this meaning, or nothing (control group). Results yielded 4 lines of evidence that were consistent with the Conceptual Base View. .
9. Honeck, Richard P.; Case, Tammy J.; Firment, Michael.
Conceptual connections between realistic and abstract pictures.
Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1988 Jan, v26 (n1):5-7.
On each of 11 trials, an experimental group of 40 undergraduates was presented a realistic picture (of the literal information in a proverb) and 2 abstract, nonrepresentational pictures. Subjects chose the abstract picture that provided the best conceptual match for the realistic picture. 20 control Subjects chose from the abstract pictures without having seen the realistic pictures. Experimental Subjects reliably selected the correct picture on most trials, whereas the control group performed at chance levels. When the experimental Subjects' rationales for their choices were appropriate, they chose the correct picture 92% of the time; inappropriate rationales were associated with a 56% correct response rate. Apparently, the Subjects used analogical formats to map surface information in the 2 kinds of pictures and connected them via a more fundamental abstract medium.
10. Honeck, Richard P.; Firment, Michael; Case, Tammy J. Expertise and categorization. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1987 Nov, v25 (n6):431-434.
Assesses the ability of 3 traditional views of categorization (exemplar, probabilistic, and classical) and the present authors' conceptual base view to adequately elucidate expert categorization. It is argued that, even though the traditional views are variously successful in explaining expert categorization phenomena, the conceptual base view is more adequate.
11. Honeck, Richard P. A serendipitous finding in face recognition. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1986 Sep, v24 (n5):369-371.
During learning, an experimental group of 26 university students heard verbal descriptions of criminal or noncriminal activities of persons whose faces were displayed. A control group of 20 students saw the faces without the descriptions. An immediate recognition test indicated that the experimental group's performance on new faces was superior to that under all conditions except those for which no crime was described. Apparently a context/contrast effect occurred such that experimental Subjects responded as if they knew that new faces had not previously been accompanied by descriptions of crimes. Emotionality and severity of crime dimensions of the descriptions did not correlate with recognition.
12. Honeck, Richard P.; Kibler, Clare T.; Sugar, Judith. The conceptual base view of categorization. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 1985 Mar, v14 (n2):155-174.
Demonstrated that Type C categories are mediated by an abstract, interpretively derived conceptual base, using undergraduate Subjects who ranked 10 sentences (instances). 16 Subjects ranked sentences in terms of how well they illustrated the figurative meaning of a proverb (proverb group), 22 Subjects on how well they illustrated the meaning of an excellent interpretation of the proverb (excellent-interpretation group), 16 Subjects on a poor interpretation of the proverb (poor-interpretation group), and 24 Subjects on an unspecified, unstated underlying meaning (control group). Results show that the excellent-interpretation group's rankings correlated highly with standard ranks established by the proverb group, but the poor-interpretation group's and the control group's rankings were uncorrelated with these 2 groups' rankings. Apparently, the Subjects in the proverb group accomplished their rankings by using a conceptual base or microtheory similar in meaning to the interpretaton used by the excellent-interpretation group. Discussion centered on the question of whether the classical, probabilistic, or exemplar views of categorization of E. E. Smith and D. L. Medin (1981) could account for the results. It was argued that they could not, basically because Type C categories are more dependent on interpretive processes than the more perceptually based Type P categories to which these views have traditionally been applied.
13. Honeck, Richard P.; Kibler, Clare T. The role of imagery, analogy, and instantiation in proverb comprehension. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 1984 Nov, v13 (n6):393-414.
Examined the role of imagery, analogy, and instantiation in understanding proverbs in light of the conceptual base theory (CBT), which proposes that proverb comprehension involves 4 phases: problem recognition, literal transformation, figurative understanding, and instantiation. 160 undergraduates were presented proverbs and given rating tasks in connection with 1 of the following: (1) pictures that illustrated the literal proverb information (picture groups), (2) instructions to image the literal proverb information (imagery groups), (3) analogies involving literal a and b terms drawn from the proverb and c and d terms that constituted an interpretation of the proverb (analogy group), (4) concrete verbal instances that illustrated the proverbs' figurative meanings (instance group), or (5) an analogy-instance group. During transfer, Subjects attempted to distinguish between novel sentences that were either positive or negative instances of the figurative meaning of the acquisition proverbs. Results indicate, as hypothesized, that the picture and imagery groups, which were assumed to have used imagery without the intention of constructing a figurative meaning, performed at chance. The analogy group and the instance group Subjects (who theoretically had constructed and solved an implicit analogy) performed equivalently and above chance. The analogy-instance group showed superior performance.
14. Honeck, Richard P.; Voegtle, Katherine; Sowry, Brenda M. Figurative understanding of pictures and sentences. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 1981 Mar, v10 (n2):135-154.
Determined whether 34 undergraduates could match a picture of the literal content of a proverb with a 1-sentence target scenario that instantiated an interpretation of the proverb. Subjects chose between a target scenario and a foil scenario designed to be a poorer instance of the interpretation. Results indicate that Subjects were successful despite the wide discrepancy in literal meaning between the pictures and scenarios. Supporting studies with 141 college students determined that this finding could not be attributed to response (scenario) bias or to certain characteristics of the pictures or of the scenarios alone. It is concluded that the interaction between these materials induced Subjects to construct abstract ideas that served to relate the materials figuratively. Idea construction is heuristically described as involving analogic processes.
15. Dorfmueller, Mark A.; Honeck, Richard P. Centrality and generativity within a linguistic family: Toward a conceptual base theory of groups. Psychological Record, 1980 Winter, v30 (n1):95-109.
Two studies examined a linguistic family consisting of a proverb, an interpretation of the proverb, and 2 scenarios that illustrated the proverb. In Exp I, centrality was assessed through 32 undergraduates' judgments of semantic similarity between family members and answers to questions regarding the representativeness, centrality, and redintegrative value of family members. Results indicate that the interpretations were the most central family members. A prompted recall task was used in Exp II to assess the generative "power" of each family member. 64 college students studied the families and then were given one of the family members, specified in acquisition, as a recall cue for the remaining members. Recall performance was best when the interpretations served as prompts. Assessment of the relationships between the experiments indicates that centrality and generativity were related directly. Results are modeled best by treating the sentences as integral members of a dynamic, conceptually based system or group rather than as items varying in semantic distance as a function of feature overlap.
16. Honeck, Richard P.; Hoffman, Robert R. Synonymy and anomaly. Bulletin of the Psychonomic Society, 1979 Jul, v14 (n1):37-40.
The comprehension of anomalous "strings" is frequently explained in terms of their "reduction" to grammatical and literal interpretations. Although degree of departure from grammaticality (a form of anomaly) is a potent psychological variable, the actual interpretability of anomalies has not been examined. The present study establishes some criteria, based on the concept of synonymy, for deciding if a sentence is a genuine interpretation of an anomaly. Specifically, R. R. Hoffman and R. P. Honeck's (see PA, Vol 56:5726) bidirectionality paradigm was used, in which in Phase 1, Subjects ranked potential interpretations in terms of their similarity to poetry lines taken from e. e. cummings; in Phase 2, different Subjects ranked these lines and foil lines with respect to the interpretations. Results met all of the criteria, indicating that the presumed interpretations were genuine and that cummings's lines are interpretable. Discussion centered on the inadequacy of the reduction view and on the need to incorporate factors (e.g., inference, world knowledge) that allow practically unlimited flexibility in theories of understanding.
17. Hoffman, Robert R.; Honeck, Richard P. She laughed his joy and she cried his grief: Psycholinguistic theory and anomaly. Psychological Record, 1979 Summer, v29 (n3):321-328.
Explored the semantics and syntax of a large corpus of interpretations of anomalous sentences. Subjects were 12 undergraduates. Anomalies were lines of poetry taken from e. e. cummings, representing a range of combinations of violations of linguistic rules. According to predominant theory, anomalies are comprehended by reduction to literal grammatical paraphrases. As in earlier studies using anomalies, the present one found that the interpretations tend to be grammatically more well-formed than their source anomalies. Semantic analysis of the interpretations revealed that anomalies are understood primarily by reliance on semantic creativity, world knowledge, and metaphor, contrary to the reduction theory.
18. Honeck, Richard P.; Sowry, Brenda M.; Voegtle, Katherine. Proverbial understanding in a pictorial context. Child Development, 1978 Jun, v49 (n2):327-331.
A review of the literature suggests that children cannot understand proverbs until age 12 yrs or so. This suggestion is challenged on the grounds that previous studies have introduced debilitating information processing loads or have required that children verbally interpret the proverbs, an invalid procedure in the present authors' opinion. To minimize or eliminate these problems, the understanding of proverbs by 60 7-9 yr olds was examined by having Subjects compare each proverb against 2 thematic pictures--a nonliteral correct interpretation of the proverb and a foil. The results, which contradict the literature, show consistent above-chance performance across Subjects, ages, and proverbs. Apparently, the pictures not only helped reduce task-induced processing loads but also served as a contextual framework for organizing the common figurative meaning of both picture and proverb.
19. Hoffman, Robert R.; Honeck, Richard P. The bidirectionality of judgments of synonymy. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 1976 Apr, v5 (n2):173-184.
Based on experimental evidence which indicates the existence of a nonverbal, abstract semantic memory, and the mutual deducibility of 2 synonymous sentences, a study was conducted with 120 university students to investigate sentence synonymy. In Phase 1 of the experiment, Subjects ranked interpretations of proverbs in terms of their semantic distance from their proverb bases. In Phase 2 different groups of Subjects ranked proverbs, including the Phase 1 original proverbs and some foils, in terms of their semantic distance from the interpretations. Results indicate that 2 synonymous sentences tend to be given similar rankings, linearly related, and that Subjects are highly consensual in their rankings. It is argued that a deep structure account cannot explain the results and that, furthermore, available linguistic and psychological theories of meaning are likewise insufficient. Synonymy is discussed in terms of an event or operation which serves to restrict interpretation.
20. Lewis, Marc; Honeck, Richard P.; Fishbein, Harold. Does shadowing differentially unlock attention? American Journal of Psychology, 1975 Sep, v88 (n3):455-458.
Tested the assumption that auditory attention is locked onto a shadowed (verbally tracked) message. In a dichotic listening task, 40 undergraduates showed a general decrease in ability to attend to the content of the shadowed message. Results indicate that shadowing unlocks (rather than locks) attention.
21. Honeck, Richard P.; Riechmann, Paul; Hoffman, Robert R. Semantic memory for metaphor: The conceptual base hypothesis. Memory & Cognition, 1975 Jul, v3 (n4):409-415.
Examined the idea that people can encode and use an extremely abstract and general form of a complex linguistic (proverb) input. In Exp I, with 32 undergraduates, each proverb was accompanied by either a conceptually related (good, mediocre, or poor) or an unrelated interpretation. The related interpretations were more effective recall prompts than were the unrelated, but only for high-imagery proverbs. In Exp II 20 Subjects wrote interpretations of the proverbs and then received either the proverb subject-noun or a brief story as a prompt. As was the case for the interpretations in Exp I, the stories did not share any major vocabulary or propositional structure with their proverb source. Nonetheless, the stories were as effective as the nouns. Also, quality of proverb interpretation and of recall performance were positively related, with the correlations involving low-imagery proverbs, and stories, tending to be higher. Both experiments support the conceptual-base notion and underline the importance of interpretive context.
22. Honeck, Richard P. Interpretive versus structural effects on semantic memory. Journal of Verbal Learning & Verbal Behavior, 1973 Aug, v12 (n4):448-455.
Investigated the possibility that sentence information may be stored in an inferentially distant form. During acquisition, 80 undergraduates heard proverbs, and along with each proverb either a repetition, grammatical transformation, parasyntactic paraphrase, or an unrelated control sentence. Prompted free recall of the proverbs was then solicited. Analyses of propositions and content words recalled revealed the superiority of the parasyntactic group. Also, no interaction between groups and proverb imagery level was evident. The groups effect is discussed in terms of 3 hypotheses: imagery, semantic blocking, and the use of a common conceptual (nonlinguistic) base. The latter hypothesis was best supported, suggesting that more abstract forms of sentence storage are possible than that reported by others.
23. Honeck, Richard P. Semantic similarity between sentences. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 1973 Apr, v2 (n2):137-151.
Investigated the effects of deep, lexical, and surface structure relationships between sentences on judgments of these sentences' semantic similarity. 10 sentence conditions, 4 paraphrases and 6 nonparaphrases, were derived from a base sentence. The 4 paraphrase types were transformational (T), a passive form of the base; lexical (L), containing synonyms for base content words; formalexic (F), a combination of T and L types; and parasyntactic (P), 1 of several alternative interpretations of the base. The 6 nonparaphrases consisted of 3 sets of 2 sentences each: the false permutation sentences retained the base lexicon, the false synonymous sentences contained synonyms, and the unrelated sentences' lexicon was completely unrelated to the base. One sentence in each nonparaphrase set retained the base surface form and the other, a passivization, did not. 94 undergraduates and 6 other adults completed a modified paired comparisons task. The following rank order of conditions, in terms of preference, was obtained: T > L > F > P > false permutation > false synonymous > unrelated. It is concluded that deep structure similarity had potent effects but that a more complete description of the data required the postulation of additional factors such as "propositional structure" and "semantic structure."
24. Frankfurter, Anthony; Honeck, Richard P. Ear differences in the recall of monaurally
Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 1973 Feb, v25 (n1):138-146.
Used a short-term memory paradigm with an interpolated task to test the recall of monaurally-presented sentences by 40 right-handed female undergraduates. 4 types of sentences were presented in a 2 * 2 design which varied surface structure (right-branching or self-embedded), and semantic constraint (semantically normal or semantically anomalous). Analysis of recall data indicates a right ear advantage (REA). This result clearly contradicts D. Kimura's "perceptual rivalry" hypothesis which assumes that induced auditory conflict (e.g., through dichotic stimulation), is necessary for producing a REA in verbal processing. It is concluded that short-term and attentional factors contributed to the presence of the REA. No interactions involving ear and either surface structure and/or semantic constraint were obtained and, therefore, no conclusion could be drawn regarding previous views that the lateralized speech encoding mechanisms operate solely at a phonemic or subphonemic level.
25. Honeck, Richard P.
A study of paraphrases.
Journal of Verbal Learning & Verbal Behavior, 1971 Aug, v10 (n4):367-381.
Describes 2 experiments with a total of 38 undergraduates to investigate the taxonomy of 3 types of paraphrase: (a) transformational (T), where the surface structure of the base was changed but its basic vocabulary (content words) were retained; (b) lexical (L), where the surface structure of the base was retained but synonyms were substituted for its content words; and (c) formalexic (F), where T and L types were combined. In Exp. I, it was found that Subjects rated T types as most similar in meaning to their base, F types least similiar, with L types intermediate. Exp. II investigated the retention, comprehension, and memory space required for storage of 2 sentences related by virtue of repetition (RE) or paraphrase (T, L, or F). Performance was superior, in general, under conditions RE and T, next for L, and worst for F.
Honeck, Richard P.
An experimental study of paraphrases.
Dissertation Abstracts International, 1970 Oct, v31 (n4-B):2310-2311.
Maintained by Francis F. Steen, Communication Studies, University of California Los Angeles