Categorical perception of animal patterns

Goldstein, Julie and Davidoff, Jules B.. 2010. Categorical perception of animal patterns. British Journal of Psychology, 99(2), pp. 229-243. ISSN 00071269 [Article]


Download (325kB) | Preview

Abstract or Description

As part of the more general issue of whether culture can affect perception, the present paper addresses the Whorfian question of whether the language available to describe perceptual experience can influence the experience itself. It investigated the effect of vocabulary on perceptual classification by the study of a remote culture (Himba) which possesses a poor colour vocabulary but a rich vocabulary of animal pattern terms. Thus, the present study examined Categorical Perception (CP) with a type of visual stimulus not previously used to assess the effect of labels on perceptual judgments. For the animal patterns, the Whorfian view predicted that it would only be the Himba who showed superiority for cross-category decisions as only they have the appropriate labels. The Whorfian view was upheld and confirmed previous findings that linked perceptual differences to labelling differences.

Item Type:


Identification Number (DOI):

Departments, Centres and Research Units:



November 2010Published

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

04 Mar 2011 11:05

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 15:30

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


View statistics for this item...

Edit Record Edit Record (login required)