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  Neural bases of social communicative intentions in speech

Hellbernd, N., & Sammler, D. (2018). Neural bases of social communicative intentions in speech. Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, 13(6), 604-615. doi:10.1093/scan/nsy034.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0001-6E32-C Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0004-4F9C-5
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Hellbernd, Nele1, Author              
Sammler, Daniela1, Author              
Affiliations:
1Otto Hahn Group Neural Bases of Intonation in Speech, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, ou_1797284              

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Free keywords: Voice; Prosody; Intention; Theory of mind; Auditory categorical perception; Connectivity
 Abstract: Our ability to understand others’ communicative intentions in speech is key to successful social interaction. Indeed, misunderstanding an ‘excuse me’ as apology, while meant as criticism, may have important consequences. Recent behavioural studies have provided evidence that prosody, that is, vocal tone, is an important indicator for speakers’ intentions. Using a novel audio-morphing paradigm, the present functional magnetic resonance imaging study examined the neurocognitive mechanisms that allow listeners to ‘read’ speakers’ intents from vocal prosodic patterns. Participants categorized prosodic expressions that gradually varied in their acoustics between criticism, doubt, and suggestion. Categorizing typical exemplars of the three intentions induced activations along the ventral auditory stream, complemented by amygdala and mentalizing system. These findings likely depict the stepwise conversion of external perceptual information into abstract prosodic categories and internal social semantic concepts, including the speaker’s mental state. Ambiguous tokens, in turn, involved cingulo-opercular areas known to assist decision-making in case of conflicting cues. Auditory and decision-making processes were flexibly coupled with the amygdala, depending on prosodic typicality, indicating enhanced categorization efficiency of overtly relevant, meaningful prosodic signals. Altogether, the results point to a model in which auditory prosodic categorization and socio-inferential conceptualization cooperate to translate perceived vocal tone into a coherent representation of the speaker’s intent.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2018-05-062017-08-222018-05-132018-05-162018-06-01
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: -
 Publishing info: -
 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Type: Peer
 Identifiers: DOI: 10.1093/scan/nsy034
PMID: 29771359
PMC: PMC6022564
 Degree: -

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Project name : -
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Funding program : Otto Hahn Award
Funding organization : Max Planck Society

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Title: Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience
  Other : SCAN
  Abbreviation : Soc Cogn Affect Neurosci
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: Oxford : Oxford University Press
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 13 (6) Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 604 - 615 Identifier: ISSN: 1749-5016
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/1000000000223760