- 公益社団法人 日本心理学会
- 心理学研究 (ISSN:00215236)
Homophone effects, which refer to the phenomenon in which lexical decision times are longer for homophones than nonhomophones, have not been consistently observed for Japanese homophones with multiple mates. Mizuno and Matsui (2016) explored this inconsistency, finding that phonological familiarity of homophones—namely, the total frequencies of a homophone and all of its mates—can countervail homophone effects. However, it remains unclear why phonological familiarity has such a great influence on homophone processing by native Japanese readers, who rely very little on phonological information when processing words (Mizuno & Matsui, 2013). We hypothesized that high phonological familiarity influences lexical decision. Accordingly, we conducted lexical decision and semantic categorization experiments using Japanese homophones with high and low phonological familiarity. The results revealed that high phonological familiarity decreased lexical decision time, but not semantic categorization time, indicating that lexical decision tasks are sensitive to the phonological familiarity of stimulus words. Finally, we discuss the need to control the phonological familiarity of homophones in some way in the context of lexical decision tasks.