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Chicagophile
  > > e-Bulletin: 04/15/02


LETTERS
The hands have it


Your article on Susan Goldin-Meadow's work on gesture ("Investigations," February/02) reminded me of psycholinguistic research that Bill Eilfort [AM'86] and I did at the U of C in 1984-1987. I was a visiting grad student in cognitive communication, and Bill was in the linguistics graduate program. Grounded in Vygotskyian theory and under the tutelage of David McNeill, we studied the timing and shapes of gestures accompanying narrative speech in various situations. During one particularly intense brainstorming session, as we expanded the classifications of narrative gesture, Bill came up with a whimsical descriptor for some of the compensatory gestures we observed in non-English speakers. He labeled the use of gesture as a means of reducing cognitive load the "firehose principle." Unfortunately, we were discouraged from submitting our work for publication. It is gratifying to see the theory we nurtured over Bill's "one bubble a minute" chicken soup validated in Goldin-Meadow et al.'s recent work.

Suzanne Markel-Fox
Collegeville, Pennsylvania


 


  APRIL 2002

  > > Volume 94, Number 4


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Auteur! Auteur!
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A Run for Our Money
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My Life as a Mind
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Thinking Inside the Box
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Home, home in the Reg


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