Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Slips of the Ear

'Slips of the ear' are problems of perception (or 'auditory illusions') relating to how the brain misinterprets aural information. If something we hear doesn't really make much sense, the brain tries to give it meaning and this frequently leads to misunderstandings of what was meant to be conveyed. Here is a (humorous) example:

video

These problems are especially prevalent in people who are learning a foreign language and have not developed a sufficient vocabulary or level of language use to spot differences between words with similar sounds. Here is an interesting academic paper on this subject: Slips of the Ear

Kusumarasdyati (2006) 'I'm orangeful' or 'I'm already awful': slips of the ear performed by learners of English as a foreign language. In Peter Jeffery (Eds) Creative Dissent: Constructive Solutions (pp.1-9) Australian Association for Research in Education, Parramatta, Sydney, Australia.

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