AuthorShen, Di, 1957-
AdvisorForster, Kenneth I.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis research examines the role of phonological information in recognizing Chinese characters. A converging methods approach was taken, employing diverse experimental paradigms to address both theoretical and empirical questions. The experiments provided strong and positive evidence for the role played by orthographic codes as well as the absence of prelexical phonological effects in reading Chinese. In two masked priming experiments, orthographic masked priming was observed consistently across the lexical decision and the naming tasks despite of the fact the primes were phonologically unrelated to the target characters. In contrast, phonological priming was found only in a task that explicitly required a vocal response. No additional priming effects were obtained for masked primes that were simultaneously visually similar and phonologically identical to the targets. A clear case was presented in the semantic categorization experiments that it is the postlexical phonology that was the primary source of the observed homophone interference effects. Although rule-based phonological conversion is implausible in Chinese characters, robust homophone interference was revealed when the subjects tried to categorize homophone characters and, more importantly, there was virtually no difference in the pattern of homophone effects between transparent and opaque characters. The data also suggest that word phonology is perhaps automatically activated during visual word recognition, and probably very early in the process. However, the recovery of lexical information does not depend on the activation of phonological information. Phonological effects revealed in naming studies were perhaps a consequence of explicit requirement for articulation, or because transparent characters were associated with more familiar pronunciations, or because of independent and automatic activation of phonetic radicals in compound characters. It is concluded that phonological information does not seem to play an important role in access to word meaning in reading Chinese.
Degree ProgramGraduate College