Cross-linguistic Variation in Sentence Processing: Evidence by Despoina Papadopoulou (eds.)

By Despoina Papadopoulou (eds.)

This booklet argues in favour of cross-linguistic edition in sentence processing through offering empirical facts from ambiguity answer in Greek as L1 and L2. it's maintained that during hugely inflected languages, like Greek, preliminary parsing judgements are made up our minds through the interplay of morphological and lexical cues instead of via common parsing rules. in the course of the preliminary parse, discourse-level info is limited by way of lexical issues, which shows that the human sentence processor is a multi-stage mechanism. The L2 facts exhibit that parsing personal tastes usually are not absolutely made up our minds through frequency files and that L2 sentence processing is principally guided through lexical details and not more so by means of different resources of information.

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Notice that the two DPs within the complex DP were presented as one chunk in De Vincenzi and Job (1995) and the results were still the same. However, Zagar et al. (1997) as well as Frenck-Mestre and Pynte (2000) have found a high-attachment preference in French with non theta-assigning prepositions. For example the past participles trahi (betrayed-masc) and trahie (betrayed-fem), though different in their written forms, do not differ phonologically. Only in two sentences from an overall of sixteen target sentences the past participle had different phonological forms for the masculine and the feminine gender.

The parser’s attempt to satisfy this criterion motivates the following parsing principle: ● Theta-attachment: The ␪-criterion attempts to be satisfied at every point during processing given the maximal ␪-grid (Pritchett, 1992: 325). According to Pritchett, this principle accounts for the parser’s initial preference to misanalyse the DP the soup as the direct object of the verb ate, since the noun receives ␪-role and case from the verb in a sentence such as (i): (i) After Steve ate the soup proved to be poisoned.

2. PARAMETERISED MODELS OF PARSING Initial research on the area of sentence processing has focused on English and it has been assumed that the parsing principles that apply for English also hold cross-linguistically21. However, studies on languages other than English have not always produced results that point towards a universal parsing system. Rather, cross-linguistic findings on sentence processing have suggested that speakers of different languages might rely on distinct parsing strategies to process sentences on-line.

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