Journal of Psycholinguistic Research

, Volume 24, Issue 1, pp 23–38 | Cite as

Components of metaphoric processing

  • Gregory Schraw


Three experiments examined whether sentences interpretable as metaphorical and literal expressions differed on three components of processing: perceptual decoding, sense selection, and integration of terms. In Experiments 1 and 2 metaphorical words were identified more readily than literal words on separate tests of perceptual identification and word recognition. In Experiment 3 the conveyed meaning of a metaphor was not recalled better than a literal interpretation of the same target sentence. It is concluded that metaphorical and literal sentences utilize separate perceptual and selectional decoding strategies, but do not differ with respect to comprehension processes once metaphorical and literal referents are instantiated. Discussion is given as to whether these differences constitute a separate metaphor strategy.


Cognitive Psychology Word Recognition Separate Test Target Sentence Comprehension Process 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gregory Schraw
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Educational PsychologyUniversity of Nebraska-LincolnLincoln

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