Encyclopedia of Clinical Neuropsychology

2018 Edition
| Editors: Jeffrey S. Kreutzer, John DeLuca, Bruce Caplan

Literal Paraphasia

  • Hugh W. BuckinghamEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-57111-9_895


Fluent segmental paraphasia; Phonemic paraphasia; Phonological substitution


The Greek prefix “para” means “substitution for” and, when affixed to “-phasia,” came to mean a substitution in speech. “Literal” paraphasia was the term for a substitution of a sound segment developed from early research on aphasia in languages with alphabetic writing systems and before the conceptualization of the “phoneme” at the end of the nineteenth century.

Under many important constraints, one phoneme may substitute for another, and as phonemes are understood as a “set of distinctive features,” there is a metric to evaluate phonemic substitutions in terms of the number of shared features between target and error. A majority of phonemic paraphasias, although not all, involve phonemes that differ in only one feature, and thus one can see that “like substitutes for like”: /p/ → /b/ differing in the feature for voice, /n/ → /m/ differing in the feature for place of articulation, and /t/ →...

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References and Readings

  1. Buckingham, H. (1989). Phonological paraphasia. In C. Code (Ed.), The characteristics of aphasia (pp. 89–110). London: Taylor & Francis.Google Scholar
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, College of Allied Health Sciences, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences CenterOklahoma CityUSA