Psychonomic Bulletin & Review

, Volume 14, Issue 3, pp 436–441 | Cite as

Emotion simulation during language comprehension

  • David A. HavasEmail author
  • Arthur M. Glenberg
  • Mike Rinck
Brief Reports


We report a novel finding on the relation of emotion and language. Covert manipulation of emotional facial posture interacts with sentence valence when measuring the amount of time to judge valence (Experiment 1) and sensibility (Experiment 2) of the sentence. In each case, an emotion-sentence compatibility effect is found: Judgment times are faster when facial posture and sentence valence match than when they mismatch. We interpret the finding using a simulation account; that is, emotional systems contribute to language comprehension much as they do in social interaction. Because the effect was not observed on a lexical decision task using emotion-laden words (Experiment 3), we suggest that the emotion simulation affects comprehension processes beyond initial lexical access.


Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Target Word Lexical Decision Lexical Decision Task Language Comprehension 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Psychonomic Society, Inc. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • David A. Havas
    • 2
    Email author
  • Arthur M. Glenberg
    • 2
  • Mike Rinck
    • 1
  1. 1.Dresden University of TechnologyDresdenGermany
  2. 2.Department of PsychologyUniversity of WisconsinMadison

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