Word-order and causal inference: The temporal attribution bias
Maria Laura Bettinsoli, Anne Maass, Yoshihisa Kashima, Caterina Suitner
JOURNAL OF EXPERIMENTAL SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY | ACADEMIC PRESS INC ELSEVIER SCIENCE | Published : 2015
Languages differ with respect to the standard order in which subject (S), object (O), and verb (V) are arranged. Two studies, using a translation paradigm and conducted in Italian and in English, tested whether the order in which S, O, and V are mentioned in active sentences will impact the causal interpretation of the described event. We hypothesized and found that participants attribute an event more to a specific cause when the relevant element occurs in the first rather than in a later (2nd or 3rd) position. Findings are discussed with respect to within-language and cross-language variations of word order.
Related Projects (1)
Awarded by Australian Research Council
The conduct of Study 2 was facilitated by a grant from the Australian Research Council (DP130100845) to the third author.