Direct speech quotations promote low relative-clause attachment in silent reading of English



The implicit prosody hypothesis (Fodor, 1998, 2002) proposes that silent reading coincides with a default, implicit form of prosody to facilitate sentence processing. Recent research demonstrated that a more vivid form of implicit prosody is mentally simulated during silent reading of direct speech quotations (e.g., Mary said, “This dress is beautiful”), with neural and behavioural consequences (e.g., Yao, Belin, & Scheepers, 2011; Yao & Scheepers, 2011).

In this study, we explored the relation between ‘default’ and ‘simulated’ implicit prosody in the context of relative-clause (RC) attachment in English. English RC-attachment structures were embedded in direct speech, indirect speech or narrative sentences. Participants either completed sentence fragments ending in incomplete RCs (Experiment 1) or rated the felicity of unambiguous low vs. high RC-attachments in silent reading (Experiment 2) and in oral reading (Experiment 3), respectively.
In this data collection, you will find task instructions, data and R scripts for each of the three experiment.
Date made available2018
PublisherUK Data Service
Date of data production2018


  • implicit prosody
  • relative-clause attachment
  • inner voice
  • direct quotations
  • indirect speech
  • mental simulation

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