David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Consciousness and Cognition 16 (4):942-953 (2007)
In a recent paper in Psychological Science, Kouider and Dupoux reported obtaining unconscious Stroop priming only when subjects had partial awareness of the masked distractor words . Kouider and Dupoux conjectured that semantic priming occurs only when such partial awareness is present. The present experiments tested this conjecture in an affective categorization priming task that differed from Kouider and Dupoux’s in using masked distractors that subjects had practiced earlier as visible words. Experiment 1 showed priming from practiced words when subjects had no partial awareness of those words. Experiment 2 showed that, in the absence of partial awareness, practiced words yielded priming but not-practiced words did not. Experiment 3 corroborated Experiment 1 and 2s results using a different test of partial awareness. These results suggest that unconscious processing of subword elements drives masked semantic priming by practiced words
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