Verbal pragmatics following unilateral stroke: Emotional content and valence

Joan C. Borod, Lawrence H. Pick, Fani Andelman, Loraine K. Obler, Joan Welkowitz, Kashemi D. Rorie, Ronald L. Bloom, Alfonso L. Campbell, James R. Tweedy, Martin Sliwinski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

53 Scopus citations


Verbal pragmatic aspects of discourse production were examined in 16 fight brain-damaged (RBD), 16 left brain-damaged (LBD), and 16 normal control fight-handed adults. The facilitation effect of emotional content, valence hypothesis, and relationship between pragmatics and emotion were evaluated. Participants produced monologues while recollecting emotional and nonemotional experiences. Transcribed monologues were rated for appropriateness on 6 pragmatic features: conciseness, lexical selection, quantity, relevancy, specificity, and topic maintenance. Overall, brain- damaged groups were rated as significantly less appropriate than normals. Consistent with the facilitation effect, emotional content enhanced pragmatic performance of LBD aphasic participants yet suppressed performance of RBD participants. Contrary to the valence hypothesis, RBD participants were more impaired for positive emotions and LBD participants for negative emotions. Pragmatic appropriateness was not strongly correlated with a measure of emotional intensity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)112-124
Number of pages13
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2000

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology


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