Several months ago, we talked about aphasia analogies with another book. We compared aphasia to a damaged computer keyboard, visiting a foreign country, and being in a prison

Lauren Marks offers several more analogies in her new book, A Stitch of Time.

Language is Like a Horse Race

Marks explores the relationship between speaking, reading, and writing. They all use words, though people experiencing aphasia may find that one or more of these tasks are harder than the others. Marks writes about a conversation with her speech therapist,

Speaking, reading, and writing are related to one another, but they aren’t the same thing, she explained. Language is a bit like a horse race. Any one of these capacities can leap ahead of the others for a bit (p. 77).

Do you find in your own experience that one task — speaking, reading, or writing — is consistently harder than the others? Or does your progress move more like a horse race, with one leaping ahead while others fall behind?

Circumlocution is Like Trying to Get into a Locked House

Marks also draws an analogy between trying to find a missing word and locking yourself out of your house on page 78:

When you can’t find a word, it’s like you are locked out of your own house. You check the windows to see if any of them are open. They aren’t. You check the side doors to see if they were left ajar. But they are sealed shut. So you go under your house, squeezing through a crawl space, hoping to access the cellar that way. Since you can’t go to the front of your language, you circumlocate.

It’s a great analogy because it takes a common experience — getting locked out of your house — and turns it into a metaphor for getting locked out of language.

What are other ways you explain the loss of language?

Image: Sarah Joy vis Flickr via creative commons licence