Fast Track Report
Preferences surf on the currents of words: Implicit verb causality influences evaluative conditioning
Article first published online: 9 DEC 2010
Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
European Journal of Social Psychology
Volume 41, Issue 1, pages 17–22, February 2011
How to Cite
Walther, E., Langer, T., Weil, R. and Komischke, M. (2011), Preferences surf on the currents of words: Implicit verb causality influences evaluative conditioning. Eur. J. Soc. Psychol., 41: 17–22. doi: 10.1002/ejsp.785
- Issue published online: 19 JAN 2011
- Article first published online: 9 DEC 2010
- Manuscript Accepted: 1 NOV 2010
- Manuscript Received: 3 AUG 2010
It is a psychological truism that thought shapes language. However, the idea that language constrains cognition is less well understood and has been debated in philosophy, linguistic, and psychology. The goal of the present research was to investigate the influence of language, as given in linguistic categories, on the formation of evaluations in an interpersonal impression formation context. Specifically, we examined the role of different verb classes in the formation of interpersonal (dis-)likes within an evaluative conditioning (EC) paradigm. EC refers to the change in liking in a conditioned stimulus (CS) as a result of its' pairing with an unconditioned stimulus (US). In contrast to traditional EC accounts that assume the rigid and unrestricted change in valence due to CS–US co-occurrence, we found that EC was moderated by language, that is, by the linguistic status of the US. Theoretical implications of these findings are discussed. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.