On a number of occasions, Saussure made the statement that nothing is given in linguistics. He meant by this remark (see Culler, 1977) that meaning was largely carried by the relation between words rather than by the words themselves. Unlike sign language which has a certain fixed, iconic quality—the sign for a lie in Plains Indian, for example, is two fingers extended across the lips, or two tongues—signs in written and spoken language are largely arbitrary. Because they are not isomorphic with the signified, they can change with each utterance, and Culler (1977) makes clear how the meaning of any given word is always constrained by the surrounding features in the sentence.


Target Word Concerned Group Background Factor Individual Word Word Choice 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Baars, B. J., & Motley, M. T. Spoonerisms as sequencer conflicts: Evidence from artificially elicited errors. American Journal of Psychology, 1976, 89, 467 - 484.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Bokert, E. G. The effects of thirst and a related verbal stimulus on dream reports. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, New York University, New York, 1967.Google Scholar
  3. Bransford, J. D., & Franks, J. J. The abstraction of linguistic ideas. Cognitive Psychology, 1971, 2, 331 - 350.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Brown, R., & McNeill, D. The tip of the tongue phenomenon. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behavior, 1966, 5, 325 - 337.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Cuddon, J. A. A dictionary of literary terms. New York: Doubleday, 1977.Google Scholar
  6. Culler, J. Ferdinand de Saussure. New York: Penguin, 1977.Google Scholar
  7. Deutsch, F., & Murphy, W. F. The clinical interview. Vol. 1. New York: International Universities Press, 1955.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Freud, S. The interpretation of dreams (Vol. 5) (J. Strachey, Trans.). London: Hogarth, 1953. (Originally published, 1900 ).Google Scholar
  9. Freud, S. The psychopathology of everyday life (Vol. 6) (J. Strachey, Trans.). London: Hogarth, 1960. (Originally published, 1901.)Google Scholar
  10. Goldman Eisler, F. Psycholinguistics. New York: Academic, 1968.Google Scholar
  11. Graves, R., & Hodge, A. The reader over your shoulder. New York: Random House, 1979. Jaffe, J., & Feldstein, S. Rhythms of dialogue. New York: Academic, 1970.Google Scholar
  12. Klein, G. S., & Wolitzky, D. L. Vocal isolation: The effects of occluding auditory feedback from ones own voice. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 1970, 75, 50 - 56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Korsch, B. M., & Negrete, V. F. Doctor-patient communication. Scientific American, 1972, 277, 66 - 74.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Kübler-Ross, E. On death and dying. New York: Macmillan, 1969.Google Scholar
  15. Luborsky, L. Momentary forgetting during psychotherapy and psychoanalysis. In R. R. Holt (Ed.), Motives and thought: Psychoanalytic essays in honor of David Rapaport. Psychological Issues, 1967, 5, Nos. 2-3, Monograph 18/19, 177-217.Google Scholar
  16. Luborsky, L. Forgetting and remembering (momentary forgetting) during psychotherapy: A new sample. In M. Mayman (Ed.), Psychoanalytic research: Three approaches to the experimental study of subliminal processes. Psychological Issues, 1973, 8, No, 2, Monograph 30, 29 - 55.Google Scholar
  17. Meltzer, L., Morris, W., & Hayes, D. Interruption outcomes and vocal amplitude: Explorations in social psychophysics. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1971, 18, 392 - 402.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Motley, M. T., & Baars, B. J. Semantic bias effects on the outcomes of verbal slips. Cognition, 1976, 4, 177 - 187.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Natale, M. Convergence of mean vocal intensity in dyadic communication as a functionGoogle Scholar
  20. of social desirability. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1975, 32, 790 - 804. Sachs, J. Recognition memory for syntactic and semantic aspects of connected discourse.Google Scholar
  21. Perception and Psychophysics, 1967, 2, 437-442.Google Scholar
  22. Schmale, A. H., & Iker, H. Hopelessness as a predictor of cervical cancer. Social Science and Medicine, 1971, 5, 95 - 100.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Spence, D. P. Language in psychotherapy. In D. Aaronson & R. Reiber (Eds.), Psycholinguistic research: Implications and applications. New York: Erlbaum, 1979.Google Scholar
  24. Spence, D. P., & Dahl, H. The general analyzer: Computer programs for processing clinical text. Unpublished manuscript, 1972.Google Scholar
  25. Spence, D. P., Scarborough, H. S., & Ginsberg, E. Lexical correlates of cervical cancer. Social Science and Medicine, 1978, 12, 141 - 145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Tweney, R. D., Tkacz, S., & Zaruba, S. Slips of the tongue and lexical storage. Language and Speech, 1975, 18, 388 - 396.Google Scholar
  27. Welkowitz, J., & Feldstein, S. Dyadic interaction and induced differences in perceived similarity. Proceedings of the 77th Annual American Psychological Association, 1969, 4, 343 - 344.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1980

Authors and Affiliations

  • Donald P. Spence
    • 1
  1. 1.College of Medicine and Dentistry of New JerseyRutgers Medical SchoolPiscatawayUSA

Personalised recommendations