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Abstract or Description
Spoken words exist for mere moments, but from this fleeting acoustic signal, we are able to apprehend considerable information. We can decode the linguistic message of the speaker, as well as information about his or her gender, age, region of origin, identity, and emotional state. As adult listeners, we are so adept at speech perception that the ability seems trivial. However, the ease with which we perceive speech belies the complexity of the perceptual, cognitive, and neural mechanisms involved.
Corsini Encyclopedia of Psychology.