[PS-3.32] Facilitation from typical colours in a picture-word interference task

Redmann, A. 1, 2 , FitzPatrick, I. 1, 2 & Indefrey, P. 1, 2

1 Institut für Sprache und Information, Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf, Germany
2 Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Centre for Cognitive Neuroimaging, Nijmegen, The Netherlands

Barsalou proposed frames in the form of recursive attribute-value structures as the general format of conceptual representations. In the present study, we aimed to explore whether and how the activation of an attribute (in this case: colour) within a frame might influence lexical access in language production.
We report results from a picture-word interference experiment, in which participants named target objects that either had a typical colour (high colour-diagnostic objects, e.g., BANANA) or did not have a typical colour (low colour-diagnostic objects, e.g., BICYCLE). Each target was paired with a distractor word (SOA: -200, 0, or +200 ms) that was either: (1) the typical colour of the target object, (2) an atypical colour, (3) an unrelated adjective, or (4) a letter string.
Our results showed that at SOA 0, typical colours significantly facilitated naming of high colour-diagnostic objects, whereas low colour-diagnostic objects did not benefit from the presentation of a colour adjective. No facilitatory or inhibitory effects were found at SOA -200 and SOA +200. Our results support previous research showing facilitatory effects induced by other conceptual components such as parts of the target object. The theoretical implications of our findings for the representation of attributes in frames will be discussed.