Gesturing by aphasic speakers, how does it compare?


We compared gesturing by aphasic speakers to that of healthy controls, to see if gesture degrades with speech, or can be compensatory. We found that gestures by aphasics were less informative than those of controls, and that gestures by people with severe aphasia were less informative than those by people with mild aphasia. We also found that aphasics tended to use fewer representation techniques in gesture than healthy controls who were asked to use gesture instead of speech. These results suggest that in aphasia, gesture tends to degrade with speech, rather than it being compensatory. This implies that the processes underlying speech and gesture production may be tightly linked or shared.

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