Aphasia with and without the ‘inner voice’

On January 17, 2017 by Wolfram Hinzen

I owe to Laura Sunnucks from London the knowledge that, apparently, some people with aphasia lose their ‘internal language’, while others don’t. As Lauren Marks puts it (http://www.speechlessdoc.com/blog-summary/2015/4/16/all-our-stories), ‘several people have told me that they retained their internal language throughout, and their desperate struggle was to just say those words aloud. They had a very different Quiet.’ In her own case, she reports a completed ‘muted’ inner voice and a loss of normal selfhood. Clearly, more is meant here than that the thought process is not phenomenologically ‘heard’ as a voice – rather, thought itself goes mute, as it were. It would be interesting to know what distinguishes these two kinds of cases.

 

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