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The role of action representations in visual object recognition

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Helbig,  HB
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Research Group Multisensory Perception and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Graf,  M
Department Human Perception, Cognition and Action, Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;
Max Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Helbig, H., Graf, M., & Kiefer, M. (2006). The role of action representations in visual object recognition. In H. Hecht, S. Berti, G. Meinhardt, & M. Gamer (Eds.), 48. Tagung Experimentell Arbeitender Psychologen (TeaP 2006) (pp. 207). Lengerich, Germany: Pabst Science Publishers.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0013-D2CF-8
Abstract
Brain areas involved in action representation (premotor cortex, posterior parietal cortex) are activated when subjects name pictures of manipulable objects, like tools (e.g., Chao Martin, 2000). Moreover, behavioral evidence indicates that manipulable objects potentiate possible actions (e.g., Tucker Ellis, 1998). We investigated whether action representations facilitate object recognition. Subjects were sequentially presented with two pictures of artifactual manipulable objects (e.g., tools, musical instruments) and were required to name the objects. In the congruent condition both objects afford similar actions, while they differ in the incongruent condition. Stimulus pairs in both conditions were matched for baseline naming accuracy, word frequency, word length, as well as visual and semantic similarity. Naming accuracy was significantly higher in the congruent condition. This action priming effect substantiates our hypothesis that action representations play an important role in the recognition of artifactual manipulable objects.