Auditory aphasia: Impairment in the understanding of auditory language and communication. Sounds are heard but they convey no meaning. The 20th century Russian composer Vissarion Shebalin had auditory aphasia after a stroke but remained an outstanding composer. The comprehension of auditory language and the musical organization of acoustic perception rely on different systems in the brain. Auditory aphasia is also known as acoustic aphasia and word deafness.