The Problem of Inner Speech in Psychology

  • A. N. Sokolov
Part of the Monographs in Psychology book series (MOPSY)


Inner speech has been little studied, either theoretically or experimentally. Yet it is of great importance to psychology as a whole, chiefly because of its close connection to thought. In thinking over silently some question, in comparing and generalizing the data of the problem being solved, we often notice that we utter to ourselves separate words and occasionally fragmentary phrases. At times, moreover, especially in solving difficult problems, we enter into a kind of discussion with ourselves: we formulate mentally a number of propositions, criticize them from various points of view, and finally select one of them, rejecting the rest. We then say that we “think in words.” The speech arising in such cases usually is in the form of soundless, “mental” talking, but sometimes it is accompanied by overt articulation, thus making its individual components perceptible for another observer as well.


Verbal Stimulus Tongue Movement Motor Aphasic Motor Speech Motor Image 
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

© Plenum Press, New York 1972

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. N. Sokolov
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of PsychologyMoscowUSSR

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