Some psychological relations between action and language structure

Patricia Marks Greenfield, Michael A. Westerman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study investigated the relationship between complex grammatical structures and complex action sequences. A developmental progression of strategies for combining seriated cups identified in an earlier study (Greenfield et al., 1972) was used to demonstrate some psychological consequences of formal parallels between language and action. The role of grammatical complexity and situational structure in language-action relations was explored. The results have implications for understanding the organization and development of complex action, its control by verbal commands, and the basic processes of speech comprehension.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)453-475
Number of pages23
JournalJournal of Psycholinguistic Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1978

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • General Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language


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