Disentangling Spatial Metaphors for Time Using Non-spatial Responses and Auditory Stimuli

Metaphor and Symbol 29 (4):316-327 (2014)
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While we often talk about time using spatial terms, experimental investigation of space-time associations has focused primarily on the space in front of the participant. This has had two consequences: the disregard of the space behind the participant and the creation of potential task demands produced by spatialized manual button-presses. We introduce and test a new paradigm that uses auditory stimuli and vocal responses to address these issues. Participants made temporal judgments about deictic or sequential relationships presented auditorily along a body-centered sagittal or transversal axis. Results involving the transversal axis replicated previous work while sagittal axis results were surprising. Deictic judgments did not use the sagittal axis but sequential judgments did, in a previously undocumented way. Participants associated earlier judgments with the space in front of them and later judgments with the space behind them. These findings, using a new approach, p..



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