The Interplay Between Gesture and Speech in the Production of Referring Expressions: Investigating the Tradeoff Hypothesis

Topics in Cognitive Science 4 (2):232-248 (2012)
The tradeoff hypothesis in the speech–gesture relationship claims that (a) when gesturing gets harder, speakers will rely relatively more on speech, and (b) when speaking gets harder, speakers will rely relatively more on gestures. We tested the second part of this hypothesis in an experimental collaborative referring paradigm where pairs of participants (directors and matchers) identified targets to each other from an array visible to both of them. We manipulated two factors known to affect the difficulty of speaking to assess their effects on the gesture rate per 100 words. The first factor, codability, is the ease with which targets can be described. The second factor, repetition, is whether the targets are old or new (having been already described once or twice). We also manipulated a third factor, mutual visibility, because it is known to affect the rate and type of gesture produced. None of the manipulations systematically affected the gesture rate. Our data are thus mostly inconsistent with the tradeoff hypothesis. However, the gesture rate was sensitive to concurrent features of referring expressions, suggesting that gesture parallels aspects of speech. We argue that the redundancy between speech and gesture is communicatively motivated
Keywords Referring expressions  Gesture–speech redundancy  Speech production  Gesture–speech tradeoff  Gesture  Iconic gestures  Pointing
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1111/j.1756-8765.2012.01183.x
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 22,734
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

View all 6 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Jerry H. Gill (2010). Language as Gesture. International Philosophical Quarterly 50 (1):25-37.
David McNeill (2005). Gesture and Thought. University of Chicago Press.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

57 ( #80,276 of 1,937,444 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

12 ( #45,256 of 1,937,444 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.