Talk:Lera Boroditsky

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According to Wikipedia Guidline the subject of a biography article should be above the level of an average University Professor. She is obviously not lower than this level as she is a University professor. Please provide any data showing that she is above the level (e.g. she discovered such and such phenomenon or she was the first woman teaching psychology at Stanford or whatever) abakharev 11:46, 29 October 2005 (UTC)

Also, references are required that establish this notability, i.e, biographical remarks published elsewhere. Personal website in insufficient. See wikipedia:no original research and Wikipedia:verifiability policies. mikka (t) 23:34, 29 October 2005 (UTC)

      • Information has been added showing profiles of this person in the popular media. <unsigned>

Added information reported in the Boston Globe that she was 23 when she got her first faculty job at MIT.

I appreciate an attempt to add info. But professor's notability (unless it is something scandalous) is judged by professional reviews, not by articles in newspapers. mikka (t) 07:20, 31 October 2005 (UTC)

A listing of some of her scholarly peer-reviewed articles has been added. <unsigned>

What is necessary is articles about her, not by her. Wikipedians don't have evaluete her acadmic merits. Someone else reputable must do this and publish somewhere. mikka (t) 19:34, 12 November 2005 (UTC)

I suppose one could argue that she is above the level of an "average University Professor" because she has, in part, revived the Whorfian debate on how language affects thought and has published in notable journals (e.g., Cognition) at a young age. However, as I say her role in reviving the Whorfian debate is not singular (there are others too, e.g., Jules Davidoff & Debi Roberson) and what might be regarded as one of her major papers "Boroditsky, L. (2001). Does language shape thought? Mandarin and English speakers’ conceptions of time. Cognitive Psychology, 43(1), 1–22" has been recently undermined both on the assumption she made that Mandarin speakers use the vertical metaphors more than English speakers (Chen, J. -Y., (2006). Do Chinese and English speakers think about time differently? Failure of replicating Boroditsky (2001).Cognition) and through failure to replicate her finding using 10 attempts (4 by Chen, 2006 and 6 by January and Kako, 2006, Cognition). I think she's probably worth keeping on Wikipedia, but I put the information here so others can make their own decisions.Neuropsychology 20:08, 29 April 2007 (UTC)

She is only "above the level of an average University Professor" in that she has a position at a prestigious US university. She has begun to have an impact on her field, but if she warrants an entry at this time in her career than so do hundreds of other Assistant Professors in the US. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Eschu (talkcontribs) 03:05, 8 October 2010 (UTC)

Russian/ Soviet psychological research[edit]

I believe I know something about the history of the Russian psychological school. I do not think Dr. Boroditsky qualifies as the representative of this school of thought. I am erasing the category of "Russian psychologists", sorry. Yasya 15:52, 9 May 2006 (UTC)

Added {WikiProject Women}[edit]

WP Women no longer classifies articles by importance czar 14:42, 15 December 2015 (UTC)
The following discussion is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Made some edits and added references and external links on 12.2 Today, Raised Class to C, and Importance to Top. Prior to this there were only 11 women in the Top and High lists.

File:11 Women in Top & High Importance Categories - 2015.12.13.png

[ Cut from User:LeoRomero/scx, pasted here - Leo ]

I changed your classification of Boroditskys importance to WP:WOMEN. I dont think she is among the 1000 most important women biographies. I tried to add the WP:WOMEN banner to some other top importance womens biographies - Some major women world leaders and intellectuals.·maunus · snunɐɯ· 17:31, 13 December 2015 (UTC)

Thanks Maunus - Re your dropping this Article's Importance from Top to Mid, with the comment Top importance clearly not warranted

Had the warrant been clear to me, I would not have chosen Top, and would not have started this Section on the Talk Page to immediately explain my edits.

I could not easily see how to class the Article's Importance, because the {WikiProject Women} template has a Quality Scale, but not an Importance Scale. So I just looked at which articles were in the Top and High categories (see image above). And in my biased opinion, I thought Lera Borodistsky was at least as important as Cate Blanchett and Madonna (entertainer).

I explained why I thought this Article deserves Top Importance, even before you lowered it to Mid. Would you mind explaining why you disagree with me? Since {WikiProject Women} has no Importance Criteria, what Criteria did you use? Could you post a link/diff to the Importance Criteria please? In the meantime, I'm moving this Article's Importance back to Top.

This was the first time I'd ever used a template on a Talk page, and I will be grateful for your explaining things to me.

Mabuhay! - LoRETta/LeoRomero 19:30, 13 December 2015 (UTC)

I disagree rather strongly. Boroditsky is important but not nearly asd important as blanchett or Madonna (neither of whom I would give Top importance for the record, and I have moved Blanchett to Mid level as well). Boroditskys research is niche research in cognitive science, I personally find it very interesting but I would not expect even another cognitive scientist to be familiar with her. Top importance should be reserved to only the very top tier of womens biographies, and Boroditsky should be of comparable significance to Cleopatra, Marie Curie, Joan of Arc, Sojourner Truth, Eleanor Roosevelt and that category of significance to fit there. I think she clearly is not in that category, or even the second most important category. There are probably at least 1000 other female scientists currently alive who would be ahead of her in importance.·maunus · snunɐɯ· 19:41, 13 December 2015 (UTC)

Hi Maunus: I respect your right to have and express your opinions. I hope you will respect my right to make decisions based on evidence, not opinions. I asked you for a link to the Importance Criteria that you are using for WikiProject Women, and noted that the {WikiProject Women} Template itself has no criteria.

I raised this Article's Importance to Top again. Please leave the Importance classification alone until you provide evidence - by way of Community (not personal) Criteria - to support your opinions. Thanks again, and Mabuhay! - LoRETta/LeoRomero 20:09, 13 December 2015 (UTC)

I am sorry but you do not have any "right" to editwar based on your opinion, based on an entirely subjective comparison of Boroditsky with Cate Blanchett and Madonna. My argument is based on knowledge of how importance scales work across a wide range of wikiprojects. You are the one employing personal criteria based on apparent ignorance of how importance scales work in wikiprojects. I have removed any importance classification for this article untill there is a consensus for which rating Boroditsky should have. (please also note that there is even a discussion on this very page in which Boroditskys basic notability is questions, certainly not something that suggests Top importance to any Wikiproject)·maunus · snunɐɯ· 20:15, 13 December 2015 (UTC)

Hi @Maunus and Czar: SSTflyer made all your problems disappear in under 4 minutes. No wasting time now over "Importance", or in yet another Edit Bore (yaaaaawn). With h/er elegant problem solving, the problem is now unmoot. That's how our problems should be solved around here, I think. - Thanks again and Mabuhay! - LoRETta/LeoRomero 09:19, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

Since you edit warred, you are part of the problem. Don't be so smug. sst✈(discuss) 09:22, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

@SSTflyer, Maunus, and Czar: Have any of you seen a child blown up in front of you? Have you ever run across a minefield to save your dying friends? How are your "edit wars" anything like that? And SSTflyer, I admit that I'm a douche, and I'm working on that. How about I work on not being so smug, and you work on not being so judgmental? No more talking with me. Back to Solitary. Mabuhay! - LoRETta/LeoRomero 09:54, 15 December 2015 (UTC)

The discussion above is closed. Please do not modify it. Subsequent comments should be made on the appropriate discussion page. No further edits should be made to this discussion.

Proposed Edits[edit]

Lera Boroditsky was born in Belarus in 1976.[1] Lera Boroditsky received her undergraduate B.A. degree in Cognitive Science at Northwestern in Chicago. She went to graduate school at Stanford University where she obtained her Ph.D. in Cognitive Psychology. She worked under Gordon Bower who was her thesis advisor at Stanford. Lera also conducted research at Stanford University. At Stanford, she was an assistant professor of psychology, philosophy, and linguistics. Currently, she is residing as an Associate Professor of Cognitive Science at the University of California, San Diego where she is continuing her research.

Lera is an Associate Professor of Cognitive Science at UCSD, and Editor in Chief of Frontiers in Cultural Psychology.[2] She studies language and cognition, focusing on interactions between language, cognition, and perception. Her research combines insights and methods from linguistics, psychology, neuroscience, and anthropology.

Her work has provided new insights on the controversial question of whether the languages we speak shape the way we think (Linguistic relativity). She uses powerful examples of cross-linguistic differences in thought and perception that stem from syntactic or lexical differences between languages. Her papers and lectures have influenced the fields of psychology, philosophy, and linguistics in providing evidence and research against the notion that human cognition is largely universal and independent of language and culture. [add citation:]

For her extensive work, she was named a Searle Scholar[3] and has received several awards for her research, including an NSFCAREER award, the Marr Prize from the Cognitive Science Society, and the McDonnell Scholar Award.[4]

In addition to scholarly work, Boroditsky also gives popular science lectures to the general public, and her work has been covered in news and media outlets. Lera talks about how all the languages differ from one another, whether in grammatical differences or contain different sounds, vocabulary, or patterns. Lera studies how the languages we speak shape the way we think. It was first detected by John Hovland that some languages, unlike English, do not use body-centered terms to describe position, but instead use cardinal directions, such as North, South, East and West. In order to speak a language using cardinal directions, one must stay oriented in order to speak the language. It was originally thought that humans were biologically incapable of being directionally oriented via cardinal directions and that only birds and animals were capable. Depending on the language one speaks, may or may not require one to be directionally oriented, in order to use terms of direction while speaking.


Lera Boroditsky is known for her research relating to cognitive science, how language affects the way we think, and other linguistic related topics. One of her main research topics focuses on how people with different linguistic backgrounds act or have different behaviors when exposed to certain events. On the individual level, Lera is interested in how the languages we speak influence and shape the way we think.

She has done a studies comparing English to other native speakers of a different language and seeing the differences in the way they think and act given a certain scenario. For example, English and Russian differentiate between cups and glasses. In Russian, the difference between a cup and a glass is based on its shape instead of its material as in English. [add citation:]

Another example of her work is how she highlighted the difference in the organization of time and space from English to Mandarin. In her article “Does language shape thought? Mandarin and English speakers' conceptions of time” (2001), Boroditsky has argued for a weak version of linguistic relativity, providing a ground for it through her cross-language studies on verb tenses carried out with English and Mandarin speakers. She argues that English speaker conceive time in a way that is analogous to their conception of a spatial horizontal movement, whereas native Mandarin speakers associate it to a vertical movement. She has also stated that these differences do not totally determine conceptualization, since it is possible for the speakers of a language to be taught to think like the other language speaker do, needless to learn this other language. Therefore, and according to Boroditsky, mother tongues may have an effect on cognition, but it is not determining.[5]

Lera has also done research on metaphors and their relation to crime. Her work has suggested that some conventional and systematic metaphors influence the way people reason about the issues they describe. For instance, previous work has found that people were more likely to want to fight back against a crime “beast” by increasing the police force but more likely to want to diagnose and treat a crime “virus” through social reform. [add citation:]

Boroditsky's results have failed to replicate with other authors.[6] — Preceding unsigned comment added by Salvo377 (talkcontribs) 18:12, 28 March 2016 (UTC)