Volume 8 Num. 3 - October 2008
Conditioning the Behavior of the Listener
Volume 8 Num. 3 - October 2008 - Pages 309-322
Henry D. Schlinger
Among the many behaviors of speakers and listeners, perhaps none is more interesting
from a behavior analytic perspective than those that modify the future behavior of the
listener. Skinner first mentioned this possibility in Verbal Behavior (1957) in a section
titled, ?Conditioning the Behavior of the Listener,? in which he described how certain
relational autoclitics could produce changes in the future behavior of listeners separate
from their more immediate and straightforward conditioned reflexive and discriminative
effects. Oddly, Skinner never returned to this topic, even when he described problem
solving and rule-governed behavior in the late 1960s. As behavior analysts celebrate the
50th anniversary of the publication of Verbal Behavior, I believe that it is important to
revisit this feature of verbal behavior. In the present article, I (a) describe how the
behavior of the listener is ?conditioned? by verbal stimuli, (b) address the question of
whether these changes in the listener?s behavior represent actual operant conditioning or
an analog of it, and (c) discuss some implications for rule-governed behavior.
verbal behavior, listening, analog conditioning, rule-governed behavior.
More articles in this volume
- [275-276] Presentation of the Series Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the book, Verbal Behavior, B.F. Skinner
- [277-285] Skinner?s Verbal Behavior In a New Century
- [279-285] An Orderly Arrangement of Well-Known Facts: Retrospective Review of B. F. Skinner?s Verbal Behavior
- [287-294] Skinner?s Verbal Behavior
- [295-307] On Skinner?s Definition of Verbal Behavior
- [323-334] Verbal Behavior of BF Skinner: a retrospective analysis
- [335-350] A Behavior Analytic Interpretation of Theory of Mind
- [351-362] Language Is Complex
- [363-386] The Ontogenetic Selection of Verbal Capabilities: Contributions of Skinner?s Verbal Behavior Theory to a More Comprehensive Understanding of Language
- [387-399] Cognitive distortions and treatment success in pathological gambling
- [401-412] Learning strategies and academic achievement of university students
- [413-430] A Proposal to Measure a Modulator of the Experience of Enjoyment: The Gaudiebility Scale
- [431-440] Aggressiveness and coping in adolescence. An intercultural perspective.
- [441-452] Effects of an intervention program for improving social competence among Primary Education students from Bolivia.