Publications

Displaying 1 - 36 of 36
  • Bowerman, M. (1975). Commentary on L. Bloom, P. Lightbown, & L. Hood, “Structure and variation in child language”. Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development, 40(2), 80-90. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/1165986.
  • Brown, P., & Levinson, S. C. (1993). 'Uphill' and 'downhill' in Tzeltal. Journal of Linguistic Anthropology, 3(1), 46-74. doi:10.1525/jlin.1993.3.1.46.

    Abstract

    In the face of the prevailing assumption among cognitive scientists that human spatial cognition is essentially egocentric, with objects located in reference to the orientation of ego's own body (hence left/right, up/down, and front/back oppositions), the Mayan language Tzeltal provides a telling counterexample. This article examines a set of conceptual oppositions in Tzeltal, uphill/downhill/across, that provides an absolute system of coordinates with respect to which the location of objects and their trajectories on both micro and macro scales are routinely described.
  • Brown, C. M., & Hagoort, P. (1993). The processing nature of the N400: Evidence from masked priming. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 5, 34-44. doi:10.1162/jocn.1993.5.1.34.

    Abstract

    The N400 is an endogenous event-related brain potential (ERP) that is sensitive to semantic processes during language comprehension. The general question we address in this paper is which aspects of the comprehension process are manifest in the N400. The focus is on the sensitivity of the N400 to the automatic process of lexical access, or to the controlled process of lexical integration. The former process is the reflex-like and effortless behavior of computing a form representation of the linguistic signal, and of mapping this representation onto corresponding entries in the mental lexicon. The latter process concerns the integration of a spoken or written word into a higher-order meaning representation of the context within which it occurs. ERPs and reaction times (RTs) were acquired to target words preceded by semantically related and unrelated prime words. The semantic relationship between a prime and its target has been shown to modulate the amplitude of the N400 to the target. This modulation can arise from lexical access processes, reflecting the automatic spread of activation between words related in meaning in the mental lexicon. Alternatively, the N400 effect can arise from lexical integration processes, reflecting the relative ease of meaning integration between the prime and the target. To assess the impact of automatic lexical access processes on the N400, we compared the effect of masked and unmasked presentations of a prime on the N400 to a following target. Masking prevents perceptual identification, and as such it is claimed to rule out effects from controlled processes. It therefore enables a stringent test of the possible impact of automatic lexical access processes on the N400. The RT study showed a significant semantic priming effect under both unmasked and masked presentations of the prime. The result for masked priming reflects the effect of automatic spreading of activation during the lexical access process. The ERP study showed a significant N400 effect for the unmasked presentation condition, but no such effect for the masked presentation condition. This indicates that the N400 is not a manifestation of lexical access processes, but reflects aspects of semantic integration processes.
  • Cutler, A., Kearns, R., Norris, D., & Scott, D. R. (1993). Problems with click detection: Insights from cross-linguistic comparisons. Speech Communication, 13, 401-410. doi:10.1016/0167-6393(93)90038-M.

    Abstract

    Cross-linguistic comparisons may shed light on the levels of processing involved in the performance of psycholinguistic tasks. For instance, if the same pattern of results appears whether or not subjects understand the experimental materials, it may be concluded that the results do not reflect higher-level linguistic processing. In the present study, English and French listeners performed two tasks - click location and speeded click detection - with both English and French sentences, closely matched for syntactic and phonological structure. Clicks were located more accurately in open- than in closed-class words in both English and French; they were detected more rapidly in open- than in closed-class words in English, but not in French. The two listener groups produced the same pattern of responses, suggesting that higher-level linguistic processing was not involved in the listeners' responses. It is concluded that click detection tasks are primarily sensitive to low-level (e.g. acoustic) effects, and hence are not well suited to the investigation of linguistic processing.
  • Cutler, A. (1993). Segmentation problems, rhythmic solutions. Lingua, 92, 81-104. doi:10.1016/0024-3841(94)90338-7.

    Abstract

    The lexicon contains discrete entries, which must be located in speech input in order for speech to be understood; but the continuity of speech signals means that lexical access from spoken input involves a segmentation problem for listeners. The speech environment of prelinguistic infants may not provide special information to assist the infant listeners in solving this problem. Mature language users in possession of a lexicon might be thought to be able to avoid explicit segmentation of speech by relying on information from successful lexical access; however, evidence from adult perceptual studies indicates that listeners do use explicit segmentation procedures. These procedures differ across languages and seem to exploit language-specific rhythmic structure. Efficient as these procedures are, they may not have been developed in response to statistical properties of the input, because bilinguals, equally competent in two languages, apparently only possess one rhythmic segmentation procedure. The origin of rhythmic segmentation may therefore lie in the infant's exploitation of rhythm to solve the segmentation problem and gain a first toehold on lexical acquisition. Recent evidence from speech production and perception studies with prelinguistic infants supports the claim that infants are sensitive to rhythmic structure and its relationship to lexical segmentation.
  • Cutler, A. (1993). Segmenting speech in different languages. The Psychologist, 6(10), 453-455.
  • Cutler, A. (1993). Phonological cues to open- and closed-class words in the processing of spoken sentences. Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, 22, 109-131.

    Abstract

    Evidence is presented that (a) the open and the closed word classes in English have different phonological characteristics, (b) the phonological dimension on which they differ is one to which listeners are highly sensitive, and (c) spoken open- and closed-class words produce different patterns of results in some auditory recognition tasks. What implications might link these findings? Two recent lines of evidence from disparate paradigms—the learning of an artificial language, and natural and experimentally induced misperception of juncture—are summarized, both of which suggest that listeners are sensitive to the phonological reflections of open- vs. closed-class word status. Although these correlates cannot be strictly necessary for efficient processing, if they are present listeners exploit them in making word class assignments. That such a use of phonological information is of value to listeners could be indirect evidence that open- vs. closed-class words undergo different processing operations. Parts of the research reported in this paper were carried out in collaboration with Sally Butterfield and David Carter, and supported by the Alvey Directorate (United Kingdom). Jonathan Stankler's master's research was supported by the Science and Engineering Research Council (United Kingdom). Thanks to all of the above, and to Merrill Garrett, Mike Kelly, James McQueen, and Dennis Norris for further assistance.
  • Cutler, A., & Mehler, J. (1993). The periodicity bias. Journal of Phonetics, 21, 101-108.
  • Cutler, A., & Fay, D. (1975). You have a Dictionary in your Head, not a Thesaurus. Texas Linguistic Forum, 1, 27-40.
  • Diesveld, P., & Kempen, G. (1993). Zinnen als bouwwerken: Computerprogramma's voor grammatica-oefeningen. MOER, Tijdschrift voor onderwijs in het Nederlands, 1993(4), 130-138.
  • Frauenfelder, U. H., Baayen, R. H., Hellwig, F. M., & Schreuder, R. (1993). Neighborhood Density and Frequency Across Languages and Modalities. Journal of Memory and Language, 32(6), 781-804. doi:10.1006/jmla.1993.1039.

    Abstract

    This research exploits the English and Dutch CELEX lexical database to investigate the form similarity relations between words. Lexical statistics analyses replicate and extend the findings of Landauer and Streeter (1973) concerning the relation between a word′s frequency and the density and frequency of its similarity neighborhood. The results for both Dutch and English reveal only a weak tendency for high-frequency written and spoken words to have more neighbors than rare words and for these neighbors to be more frequent than those of rare words. However, the number of neighbors was found to correlate more highly with bigram frequency than with word frequency. To clarify the relations between these properties, a stochastic model is presented which captures the relevant effects of phonotactic structure on neighborhood similarities. The implications of these findings for models of language production and comprehension are considered.
  • Hagoort, P. (1993). [Review of the book Language: Structure, processing and disorders, by David Caplan]. Trends in Neurosciences, 16, 124. doi:10.1016/0166-2236(93)90138-C.
  • Hagoort, P. (1993). Impairments of lexical-semantic processing in aphasia: evidence from the processing of lexical ambiguities. Brain and Language, 45, 189-232. doi:10.1006/brln.1993.1043.

    Abstract

    Broca′s and Wernicke′s aphasics performed speeded lexical decisions on the third member of auditorily presented triplets consisting of two word primes followed by either a word or a nonword. In three of the four priming conditions, the second prime was a homonym with two unrelated meanings. The relation of the first prime and the target with the two meanings of the homonym was manipulated in the different priming conditions. The two readings of the ambiguous words either shared their grammatical form class (noun-noun ambiguities) or not (noun-verb ambiguities). The silent intervals between the members of the triplets were varied between 100, 500, and 1250 msec. Priming at the shortest interval is mainly attributed to automatic lexical processing, and priming at the longest interval is mainly due to forms of controlled lexical processing. For both Broca′s and Wernicke′s aphasics overall priming effects were obtained at ISIs of 100 and 500 msec, but not at an ISI of 1250 msec. This pattern of results is consistent with the view that both types of aphasics can automatically access the semantic lexicon, but might be impaired in integrating lexical-semantic information into the context. Broca′s aphasics showed a specific impairment in selecting the contextually appropriate reading of noun-verb ambiguities, which is suggested to result from a failure either in the on-line morphological parsing of complex word forms into a stem and an inflection or in the on-line exploitation of the syntactic implications of the inflectional suffix. In a final experiment patients were asked to explicitly judge the semantic relations between a subset of the primes that were used in the lexical decision study. Wernicke′s aphasics performed worse than both Broca′s aphasics and normal controls, indicating a specific impairment for these patients in consciously operating on automatically accessed lexical-semantic information.
  • Hagoort, P., & Brown, C. M. (1993). Hersenpotentialen als maat voor het menselijk taalvermogen. Stem, Spraak- en Taalpathologie, 2, 213-235.
  • Hagoort, P., Brown, C. M., & Groothusen, J. (1993). The syntactic positive shift (SPS) as an ERP measure of syntactic processing. Language and Cognitive Processes, 8, 439-483. doi:10.1080/01690969308407585.

    Abstract

    This paper presents event-related brain potential (ERP) data from an experiment on syntactic processing. Subjects read individual sentences containing one of three different kinds of violations of the syntactic constraints of Dutch. The ERP results provide evidence for M electrophysiological response to syntactic processing that is qualitatively different from established ERP responses to semantic processing. We refer to this electro-physiological manifestation of parsing as the Syntactic Positive Shift (SPS). The SPS was observed in an experiment in which no task demands, other than to read the input, were imposed on the subjects. The pattern of responses to the different kinds of syntactic violations suggests that the SPS indicates the impossibility for the parser to assign the preferred structure to an incoming string of words, irrespective of the specific syntactic nature of this preferred structure. The implications of these findings for further research on parsing are discussed.
  • Hoeks, B., & Levelt, W. J. M. (1993). Pupillary dilation as a measure of attention: A quantitative system analysis. Behavior Research Methods, Instruments, & Computers, 25(1), 16-26.
  • Jusczyk, P. W., Cutler, A., & Redanz, N. J. (1993). Infants’ preference for the predominant stress patterns of English words. Child Development, 64, 675-687. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/1131210.

    Abstract

    One critical aspect of language acquisition is the development of a lexicon that associates sounds and meanings; but developing a lexicon first requires that the infant segment utterances into individual words. How might the infant begin this process? The present study was designed to examine the potential role that sensitivity to predominant stress patterns of words might play in lexical development. In English, by far the majority of words have stressed (strong) initial syllables. Experiment 1 of our study demonstrated that by 9 months of age American infants listen significantly longer to words with strong/weak stress patterns than to words with weak/strong stress patterns. However, Experiment 2 showed that no significant preferences for the predominant stress pattern appear with 6-month-old infants, which suggests that the preference develops as a result of increasing familiarity with the prosodic features of the native language. In a third experiment, 9-month-olds showed a preference for strong/weak patterns even when the speech input was low-pass filtered, which suggests that their preference is specifically for the prosodic structure of the words. Together the results suggest that attention to predominant stress patterns in the native language may form an important part of the infant's process of developing a lexicon.
  • Kempen, G. (1975). De taalgebruiker in de mens: Schets van zijn bouw en funktie, toepassingen op moedertaal en vreemde taal verwerving. Forum der Letteren, 16, 132-158.
  • Kempen, G. (1993). Mensentaal als computertaal. Onze Taal, 62, 275-277.
  • Kempen, G. (1975). Theoretiseren en experimenteren in de cognitieve psychologie. Gedrag: Tijdschrift voor Psychologie, 6, 341-347.
  • Kempen, G. (1993). Zinsontleding kan een exact vak worden. Levende Talen, 483, 459-462.
  • Klein, W. (1975). Einleitung. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik; Metzler, Stuttgart, 5(18), 7-8.
  • Klein, W. (1975). Eine Theorie der Wortstellungsveränderung: Einige kritische Bemerkungen zu Vennemanns Theorie der Sprachentwicklung. Linguistische Berichte, 37(75), 46-57.
  • Klein, W. (1993). Wie ist der Stand der germanistischen Sprachwissenschaft, und was können wir tun, um ihn zu verbessern? Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, 90/91, 40-52.
  • Klein, W. (1975). Zur Sprache ausländischer Arbeiter: Syntaktische Analysen und Aspekte des kommunikativen Verhaltens. Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik, 18, 78-121.
  • Levelt, W. J. M. (1993). Timing in speech production with special reference to word form encoding. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 682, 283-295. doi:10.1111/j.1749-6632.1993.tb22976.x.
  • Levinson, S. C., & Brown, P. (1993). Background to "Immanuel Kant among the Tenejapans". Anthropology Newsletter, 34(3), 22-23. doi:10.1111/an.1993.34.3.22.
  • Nix, A. J., Mehta, G., Dye, J., & Cutler, A. (1993). Phoneme detection as a tool for comparing perception of natural and synthetic speech. Computer Speech and Language, 7, 211-228. doi:10.1006/csla.1993.1011.

    Abstract

    On simple intelligibility measures, high-quality synthesiser output now scores almost as well as natural speech. Nevertheless, it is widely agreed that perception of synthetic speech is a harder task for listeners than perception of natural speech; in particular, it has been hypothesized that listeners have difficulty identifying phonemes in synthetic speech. If so, a simple measure of the speed with which a phoneme can be identified should prove a useful tool for comparing perception of synthetic and natural speech. The phoneme detection task was here used in three experiments comparing perception of natural and synthetic speech. In the first, response times to synthetic and natural targets were not significantly different, but in the second and third experiments response times to synthetic targets were significantly slower than to natural targets. A speed-accuracy tradeoff in the third experiment suggests that an important factor in this task is the response criterion adopted by subjects. It is concluded that the phoneme detection task is a useful tool for investigating phonetic processing of synthetic speech input, but subjects must be encouraged to adopt a response criterion which emphasizes rapid responding. When this is the case, significantly longer response times for synthetic targets can indicate a processing disadvantage for synthetic speech at an early level of phonetic analysis.
  • Otake, T., Hatano, G., Cutler, A., & Mehler, J. (1993). Mora or syllable? Speech segmentation in Japanese. Journal of Memory and Language, 32, 258-278. doi:10.1006/jmla.1993.1014.

    Abstract

    Four experiments examined segmentation of spoken Japanese words by native and non-native listeners. Previous studies suggested that language rhythm determines the segmentation unit most natural to native listeners: French has syllabic rhythm, and French listeners use the syllable in segmentation, while English has stress rhythm, and segmentation by English listeners is based on stress. The rhythm of Japanese is based on a subsyllabic unit, the mora. In the present experiments Japanese listeners′ response patterns were consistent with moraic segmentation; acoustic artifacts could not have determined the results since nonnative (English and French) listeners showed different response patterns with the same materials. Predictions of a syllabic hypothesis were disconfirmed in the Japanese listeners′ results; in contrast, French listeners showed a pattern of responses consistent with the syllabic hypothesis. The results provide further evidence that listeners′ segmentation of spoken words relies on procedures determined by the characteristic phonology of their native language.
  • Senft, G. (1993). [Review of the book Kitava a linguistic and aesthetic analysis of visual art in Melanesia by Giancarlo M. G. Scoditti]. Journal of Pragmatics, 19, 281-290. doi:10.1016/0378-2166(93)90033-L.
  • Senft, G. (1993). [Review of the book Language death: Factual and theoretical explorations with special reference to East Africa ed. by Matthias Brenzinger]. Linguistics, 31, 1197-1202.
  • Senft, G. (1993). A grammaticalization hypothesis on the origin of Kilivila classificatory particles. Sprachtypologie und Universalienforschung, 46, 100-112.
  • Senft, G. (1993). [Review of the book The song of the flying fox by Jürg Wassmann]. Bijdragen tot de Taal-, Land- en Volkenkunde, 149, 185-186.
  • Seuren, P. A. M. (1963). Naar aanleiding van Dr. F. Balk-Smit Duyzentkunst "De Grammatische Functie". Levende Talen, 219, 179-186.
  • Seuren, P. A. M. (1993). Overpeinzingen bij negatie. Gramma/TTT, tijdschrift voor taalwetenschap, 2(2), 145-163.
  • Van de Geer, J. P., & Levelt, W. J. M. (1963). Detection of visual patterns disturbed by noise: An exploratory study. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 15, 192-204. doi:10.1080/17470216308416324.

    Abstract

    An introductory study of the perception of stochastically specified events is reported. The initial problem was to determine whether the perceiver can split visual input data of this kind into random and determined components. The inability of subjects to do so with the stimulus material used (a filmlike sequence of dot patterns), led to the more general question of how subjects code this kind of visual material. To meet the difficulty of defining the subjects' responses, two experiments were designed. In both, patterns were presented as a rapid sequence of dots on a screen. The patterns were more or less disturbed by “noise,” i.e. the dots did not appear exactly at their proper places. In the first experiment the response was a rating on a semantic scale, in the second an identification from among a set of alternative patterns. The results of these experiments give some insight in the coding systems adopted by the subjects. First, noise appears to be detrimental to pattern recognition, especially to patterns with little spread. Second, this shows connections with the factors obtained from analysis of the semantic ratings, e.g. easily disturbed patterns show a large drop in the semantic regularity factor, when only a little noise is added.

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