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|Subject:||Leak-back effect. The time words remain in 'air'.|
|Question:||A long time ago I secured for my sociology courses a videotape featuring a sociolinguist. The speaker was an older lady who sat in a rocking chair and dispensed valuable information. One of the things she said is that words have a leak-back effect. So, if warriors say, for example, ''A number of people in Iraq were killed in the theater,'' then a listener hears ''theater'' and it ''leaks back'' to ''kill'' and the horror of killing lightens and is made more palatable. Googling, I don't see anything about this ''leak-back'' effect. Maybe it's called something else now? I need to have this information for a book I am writing where it is oh-so-relevant! Also, I have read that words (maybe it's ''sound''?) lasts for six seconds before dissipating. That's why we listen to someone and a short time afterward (before the elapse of six seconds), it dawns on us what the person really said: ''Huh? Did I hear you say what I think I heard you say . . . ?'' Can you provide me with links where these two phenomena are briefly discussed? ASAP, please? Thank you. Lee Campbell, PhD. 941,457-6785|
|Reply:||I don't know about a "leak-back" effect, unless it's related to the old idea of a semantic differential, in which the connotation of words can have an effect on neighboring words.The second phenomenon you mentioned has to do with short-term or working memory. The flip side of that is that if someone interrupts you while you're talking, it's often difficult to get back to what you were saying.|
|Reply From:||Susan D Fischer click here to access email|