James J. Jenkins (1995) Comprehending Comprehension . Psycoloquy: 6(26) Language Comprehension (6)
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Psycoloquy 6(26): Comprehending Comprehension

Comprehending Comprehension
Book Review of Gernsbacher on Language-Comprehension

James J. Jenkins
Psychology Department
University of South Florida
Tampa, Florida 33620-8200



Gernsbacher's book (1990) reports a ten-year series of experiments giving substance to the view that understanding a sentence requires the building of some sort of mental structure. The experiments are clearly described, counter-views are considered and dealt with, and research is integrated with that of other investigators. The bibliography is excellent. The experimental paradigm may be criticized as being mainly concerned with the disruption of processing and neglecting the facilitation of comprehension. Overall, however, the book is an impressive contribution to our knowledge.


comprehension, cognitive processes, sentence comprehension, psycholinguistics