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Communicative deficits in agenesis of the corpus callosum: Nonliteral language and affective prosody

Paul, Lynn K. and Van Lancker-Sidtis, Diana and Schieffer, Beatrix and Dietrich, Rosalind and Brown, Warren S. (2003) Communicative deficits in agenesis of the corpus callosum: Nonliteral language and affective prosody. Brain and Language, 85 (2). pp. 313-324. ISSN 0093-934X. doi:10.1016/S0093-934X(03)00062-2.

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While some individuals with agenesis of the corpus callosum can perform normally on standardized intelligence tests, clinical observations suggest that they nevertheless have deficits in the domains of fluid and social intelligence. Particularly important for social competence is adequate understanding and use of paralinguistic information. This study examined the impact of callosal absence on the processing of pragmatic and paralinguistic information. Young adult males with agenesis of the corpus callosum (ACC) were evaluated in the areas of nonliteral language comprehension, proverb recognition and interpretation, and perception of affective prosody. Ten ACC individuals with normal Wechsler IQ were compared to 14 sex, age, and IQ matched normal controls. The Formulaic and Novel Language Comprehension Test (FANL-C), Gorham Proverbs Test, and LA Prosody Test were administered. ACC subjects exhibited significant impairment on the nonliteral items of the FANL-C, but no significant difference from controls in comprehension of literal items. ACC subjects also exhibited significant deficits in both self-generated interpretation and recognition of proverb meaning, and in recognition of affective prosody. These results demonstrate that normally intelligent individuals with ACC are impaired in the understanding of nonliteral language and emotional-prosodic cues that are important in social communication. In all three tests, the performance of individuals with ACC was similar to patients with right hemisphere brain damage. Thus, persons with ACC appear to lack interhemispheric integration of critical aspects of language processed by the right hemisphere.

Item Type:Article
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Paul, Lynn K.0000-0002-3128-8313
Brown, Warren S.0000-0001-6142-5588
Additional Information:© 2003 Published by Elsevier Inc. Accepted 21 January 2003, Available online 22 April 2003.v Acknowledgements: This research was supported by NICHD Grant HD33118. Parts of this research formed the Ph.D. dissertation of Lynn K. Paul at the Graduate School of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary. The authors wish to thank Gail Rallon for help in analysis of proverb interpretations; Connie Dunn, Ph.D., for her assistance with data collection; Daniel Kempler and John J. Sidtis for comments on an earlier draft; and Kathryn Schilmoeller, Ph.D., and the ACC Network for help in identifying subjects.
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Subject Keywords:Corpus callosum; Agenesis of the corpus callosum; Nonliteral language; Prosody; Proverbs; Idioms
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190313-112114187
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:93774
Deposited By: Katherine Johnson
Deposited On:13 Mar 2019 18:28
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 17:00

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