Cognition, language and concepts, models of categorization, comprehension and use of reference, word meaning, the relation to language to thought.
Current projects include testing theories of naming and categorization by assessing the relation of similarity to naming; by studying how names are selected for unfamiliar objects in a referential communication task; by studying how names are assigned to familiar objects in English by non-native speakers of English; and by examining the structure of categories defined by verbs.
Malt, B.C. & Paquet, M. (2013). The real deal: What judgments of really reveal about how people think about artifacts. Memory & Cognititon, 41, 354-364.
Pavlenko, A. & Malt, B.C. (2011). Kitchen Russian: Cross-linguistic differences and first-language object naming by Russian-English bilinguals. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 14, 19-45.
Malt, B.C. (2010). Naming artifacts: Patterns and processes. In B. Ross (Ed.), The psychology of learning and motivation: Advances in research and theory (pp. 1-38). Amsterdam: Elsevier.
Malt, B.C., Gennari, S., and Imai, M. (2010). Lexicalization patterns and the world-to-words mapping. In B.C. Malt and P. Wolff (Eds.), Words and the mind: How words capture human experience (pp. 29-57). New York: Oxford University Press.
Gao, Y. & Malt, B.C. (2009). Mental representation and cognitive consequences of Chinese individual classifiers. Language and Cognitive Processes, 24, 1124-1179.
Malt, B.C., Gennari, S., Imai, M., Ameel, E., Tsuda, N., & Majid, A. (2008). Talking about walking: Biomechanics and the language of locomotion. Psychological Science, 19, 232-240.
Malt, B.C. and Sloman, S.A. (2007). Category essence or essentially pragmatic? Creator's intention in naming and what's really what. Cognition, 105, 615-648.
Ameel, E., Storms, G., Malt, B., & Sloman, S.A. (2005). How billinguals solve the naming problem. Journal of Memory and Language, 53, 60-80.
Malt, B.C., Sloman, S.A., and Gennari, S. (2003). Speaking vs. thinking about objects and actions. In D. Genter & S. Goldin-Meadow (Eds.) Language in mind: Advances in the study of language and thought (pp. 81-111). Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Malt, B.C., Sloman, S.A., and Gennari, S. (2003). Universality and language specificity in object naming. Journal of Memory and Language, 49, 20-42.
Malt, B.C. and Sloman, S.A. (2003). Linguistic diversity and object naming by non-native speakers of English. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 6, 47-67.
Gennari, S., Sloman, S.A., Malt, B.C., and Fitch, W.T. (2002). Motion events in language and cognition. Cognition, 83, 49-79.
Malt, B.C., Sloman, S.A., Gennari, S., Shi, M., & Wang, Y. (1999). Knowing versus naming: Similarity and the linguistic categorization of artifacts. Journal of Memory and Language, 40, 230-262