Publications

Displaying 1 - 100 of 280
  • Abdel Rahman, R., & Sommer, W. (2003). Does phonological encoding in speech production always follow the retrieval of semantic knowledge?: Electrophysiological evidence for parallel processing. Cognitive Brain Research, 16(3), 372-382. doi:10.1016/S0926-6410(02)00305-1.

    Abstract

    In this article a new approach to the distinction between serial/contingent and parallel/independent processing in the human cognitive system is applied to semantic knowledge retrieval and phonological encoding of the word form in picture naming. In two-choice go/nogo tasks pictures of objects were manually classified on the basis of semantic and phonological information. An additional manipulation of the duration of the faster and presumably mediating process (semantic retrieval) allowed to derive differential predictions from the two alternative models. These predictions were tested with two event-related brain potentials (ERPs), the lateralized readiness potential (LRP) and the N200. The findings indicate that phonological encoding can proceed in parallel to the retrieval of semantic features. A suggestion is made how to accommodate these findings with models of speech production.
  • Abdel Rahman, R., Sommer, W., & Schweinberger, S. R. (2002). Brain potential evidence for the time course of access to biographical facts and names of familiar persons. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 28(2), 366-373. doi:10.1037//0278-7393.28.2.366.

    Abstract

    On seeing familiar persons, biographical (semantic) information is typically retrieved faster and more accurately than name information. Serial stage models explain this pattern by suggesting that access to the name follows the retrieval of semantic information. In contrast, interactive activation and competition (IAC) models hold that both processes start together but name retrieval is slower because of structural peculiarities. With a 2-choice go/no-go procedure based on a semantic and a name-related classification, the authors tested differential predictions of the 2 alternative models for reaction times (RTs) and lateralized readiness potentials (LRP). Both LRP (Experiment 1) and RT (Experiment 2) results are in line with IAC models of face identification and naming.
  • Abdel Rahman, R., Van Turennout, M., & Levelt, W. J. M. (2003). Phonological encoding is not contingent on semantic feature retrieval: An electrophysiological study on object naming. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 29(5), 850-860. doi:10.1037/0278-7393.29.5.850.

    Abstract

    In the present study, the authors examined with event-related brain potentials whether phonological encoding in picture naming is mediated by basic semantic feature retrieval or proceeds independently. In a manual 2-choice go/no-go task the choice response depended on a semantic classification (animal vs. object) and the execution decision was contingent on a classification of name phonology (vowel vs. consonant). The introduction of a semantic task mixing procedure allowed for selectively manipulating the speed of semantic feature retrieval. Serial and parallel models were tested on the basis of their differential predictions for the effect of this manipulation on the lateralized readiness potential and N200 component. The findings indicate that phonological code retrieval is not strictly contingent on prior basic semantic feature processing.
  • Akker, E., & Cutler, A. (2003). Prosodic cues to semantic structure in native and nonnative listening. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 6(2), 81-96. doi:10.1017/S1366728903001056.

    Abstract

    Listeners efficiently exploit sentence prosody to direct attention to words bearing sentence accent. This effect has been explained as a search for focus, furthering rapid apprehension of semantic structure. A first experiment supported this explanation: English listeners detected phoneme targets in sentences more rapidly when the target-bearing words were in accented position or in focussed position, but the two effects interacted, consistent with the claim that the effects serve a common cause. In a second experiment a similar asymmetry was observed with Dutch listeners and Dutch sentences. In a third and a fourth experiment, proficient Dutch users of English heard English sentences; here, however, the two effects did not interact. The results suggest that less efficient mapping of prosody to semantics may be one way in which nonnative listening fails to equal native listening.
  • Alario, F.-X., Schiller, N. O., Domoto-Reilly, K., & Caramazza, A. (2003). The role of phonological and orthographic information in lexical selection. Brain and Language, 84(3), 372-398. doi:10.1016/S0093-934X(02)00556-4.

    Abstract

    We report the performance of two patients with lexico-semantic deficits following left MCA CVA. Both patients produce similar numbers of semantic paraphasias in naming tasks, but presented one crucial difference: grapheme-to-phoneme and phoneme-to-grapheme conversion procedures were available only to one of them. We investigated the impact of this availability on the process of lexical selection during word production. The patient for whom conversion procedures were not operational produced semantic errors in transcoding tasks such as reading and writing to dictation; furthermore, when asked to name a given picture in multiple output modalities—e.g., to say the name of a picture and immediately after to write it down—he produced lexically inconsistent responses. By contrast, the patient for whom conversion procedures were available did not produce semantic errors in transcoding tasks and did not produce lexically inconsistent responses in multiple picture-naming tasks. These observations are interpreted in the context of the summation hypothesis (Hillis & Caramazza, 1991), according to which the activation of lexical entries for production would be made on the basis of semantic information and, when available, on the basis of form-specific information. The implementation of this hypothesis in models of lexical access is discussed in detail.
  • Allen, S. E. M. (1998). Categories within the verb category: Learning the causative in Inuktitut. Linguistics, 36(4), 633-677.
  • Ameka, F. K. (2002). Cultural scripting of body parts for emotions: On 'jealousy' and related emotions in Ewe. Pragmatics and Cognition, 10(1-2), 27-55. doi:10.1075/pc.10.12.03ame.

    Abstract

    Different languages present a variety of ways of talking about emotional experience. Very commonly, feelings are described through the use of ‘body image constructions’ in which they are associated with processes in, or states of, specific body parts. The emotions and the body parts that are thought to be their locus and the kind of activity associated with these body parts vary cross-culturally. This study focuses on the meaning of three ‘body image constructions’ used to describe feelings similar to, but also different from, English ‘jealousy’, ‘envy’, and ‘covetousness’ in the West African language Ewe. It is demonstrated that a ‘moving body’, a pychologised eye, and red eyes are scripted for these feelings. It is argued that the expressions are not figurative and that their semantics provide good clues to understanding the cultural construction of emotions both emotions and the body.
  • Ameka, F. K. (1989). [Review of The case for lexicase: An outline of lexicase grammatical theory by Stanley Starosta]. Studies in Language, 13(2), 506-518.
  • Ameka, F. K. (1998). Particules énonciatives en Ewe. Faits de langues, 6(11/12), 179-204.

    Abstract

    Particles are little words that speakers use to signal the illocutionary force of utterances and/or express their attitude towards elements of the communicative situation, e.g. the addresses. This paper presents an overview of the classification, meaning and use of utterance particles in Ewe. It argues that they constitute a grammatical word class on functional and distributional grounds. The paper calls for a cross-cultural investigation of particles, especially in Africa, where they have been neglected for far too long.
  • Bailey, A., Hervas, A., Matthews, N., Palferman, S., Wallace, S., Aubin, A., Michelotti, J., Wainhouse, C., Papanikolaou, K., Rutter, M., Maestrini, E., Marlow, A., Weeks, D. E., Lamb, J., Francks, C., Kearsley, G., Scudder, P., Monaco, A. P., Baird, G., Cox, A. and 46 moreBailey, A., Hervas, A., Matthews, N., Palferman, S., Wallace, S., Aubin, A., Michelotti, J., Wainhouse, C., Papanikolaou, K., Rutter, M., Maestrini, E., Marlow, A., Weeks, D. E., Lamb, J., Francks, C., Kearsley, G., Scudder, P., Monaco, A. P., Baird, G., Cox, A., Cockerill, H., Nuffield, F., Le Couteur, A., Berney, T., Cooper, H., Kelly, T., Green, J., Whittaker, J., Gilchrist, A., Bolton, P., Schönewald, A., Daker, M., Ogilvie, C., Docherty, Z., Deans, Z., Bolton, B., Packer, R., Poustka, F., Rühl, D., Schmötzer, G., Bölte, S., Klauck, S. M., Spieler, A., Poustka., A., Van Engeland, H., Kemner, C., De Jonge, M., Den Hartog, I., Lord, C., Cook, E., Leventhal, B., Volkmar, F., Pauls, D., Klin, A., Smalley, S., Fombonne, E., Rogé, B., Tauber, M., Arti-Vartayan, E., Fremolle-Kruck., J., Pederson, L., Haracopos, D., Brondum-Nielsen, K., & Cotterill, R. (1998). A full genome screen for autism with evidence for linkage to a region on chromosome 7q. International Molecular Genetic Study of Autism Consortium. Human Molecular Genetics, 7(3), 571-578. doi:10.1093/hmg/7.3.571.

    Abstract

    Autism is characterized by impairments in reciprocal social interaction and communication, and restricted and sterotyped patterns of interests and activities. Developmental difficulties are apparent before 3 years of age and there is evidence for strong genetic influences most likely involving more than one susceptibility gene. A two-stage genome search for susceptibility loci in autism was performed on 87 affected sib pairs plus 12 non-sib affected relative-pairs, from a total of 99 families identified by an international consortium. Regions on six chromosomes (4, 7, 10, 16, 19 and 22) were identified which generated a multipoint maximum lod score (MLS) > 1. A region on chromosome 7q was the most significant with an MLS of 3.55 near markers D7S530 and D7S684 in the subset of 56 UK affected sib-pair families, and an MLS of 2.53 in all 87 affected sib-pair families. An area on chromosome 16p near the telomere was the next most significant, with an MLS of 1.97 in the UK families, and 1.51 in all families. These results are an important step towards identifying genes predisposing to autism; establishing their general applicability requires further study.
  • Bastiaansen, M. C. M., & Hagoort, P. (2003). Event-induced theta responses as a window on the dynamics of memory. Cortex, 39(4-5), 967-972. doi:10.1016/S0010-9452(08)70873-6.

    Abstract

    An important, but often ignored distinction in the analysis of EEG signals is that between evoked activity and induced activity. Whereas evoked activity reflects the summation of transient post-synaptic potentials triggered by an event, induced activity, which is mainly oscillatory in nature, is thought to reflect changes in parameters controlling dynamic interactions within and between brain structures. We hypothesize that induced activity may yield information about the dynamics of cell assembly formation, activation and subsequent uncoupling, which may play a prominent role in different types of memory operations. We then describe a number of analysis tools that can be used to study the reactivity of induced rhythmic activity, both in terms of amplitude changes and of phase variability.

    We briefly discuss how alpha, gamma and theta rhythms are thought to be generated, paying special attention to the hypothesis that the theta rhythm reflects dynamic interactions between the hippocampal system and the neocortex. This hypothesis would imply that studying the reactivity of scalp-recorded theta may provide a window on the contribution of the hippocampus to memory functions.

    We review studies investigating the reactivity of scalp-recorded theta in paradigms engaging episodic memory, spatial memory and working memory. In addition, we review studies that relate theta reactivity to processes at the interface of memory and language. Despite many unknowns, the experimental evidence largely supports the hypothesis that theta activity plays a functional role in cell assembly formation, a process which may constitute the neural basis of memory formation and retrieval. The available data provide only highly indirect support for the hypothesis that scalp-recorded theta yields information about hippocampal functioning. It is concluded that studying induced rhythmic activity holds promise as an additional important way to study brain function.
  • Bastiaansen, M. C. M., Posthuma, D., Groot, P. F. C., & De Geus, E. J. C. (2002). Event-related alpha and theta responses in a visuo-spatial working memory task. Clinical Neurophysiology, 113(12), 1882-1893. doi:10.1016/S1388-2457(02)00303-6.

    Abstract

    Objective: To explore the reactivity of the theta and alpha rhythms during visuo-spatial working memory. Methods: One hundred and seventy-four subjects performed a delayed response task. They had to remember the spatial location of a target stimulus on a computer screen for a 1 or a 4 s retention interval. The target either remained visible throughout the entire interval (sensory trials) or disappeared after 150 ms (memory trials). Changes in induced band power (IBP) in the electroencephalogram (EEG) were analyzed in 4 narrow, individually adjusted frequency bands between 4 and 12 Hz. Results: After presentation of the target stimulus, a phasic power increase was found, irrespective of condition and delay interval, in the lower (roughly, 4–8 Hz) frequency bands, with a posterior maximum. During the retention interval, sustained occipital–parietal alpha power increase and frontal theta power decrease were found. Most importantly, the memory trials showed larger IBP decreases in the theta band over frontal electrodes than the sensory trials. Conclusions: The phasic power increase following target onset is interpreted to reflect encoding of the target location. The sustained theta decrease, which is larger for memory trials, is tentatively interpreted to reflect visuo-spatial working memory processes.
  • Bastiaansen, M. C. M., Van Berkum, J. J. A., & Hagoort, P. (2002). Event-related theta power increases in the human EEG during online sentence processing. Neuroscience Letters, 323(1), 13-16. doi:10.1016/S0304-3940(01)02535-6.

    Abstract

    By analyzing event-related changes in induced band power in narrow frequency bands of the human electroencephalograph, the present paper explores a possible functional role of the alpha and theta rhythms during the processing of words and of sentences. The results show a phasic power increase in the theta frequency range, together with a phasic power decrease in the alpha frequency range, following the presentation of words in a sentence. These effects may be related to word processing, either lexical or in relation to sentence context. Most importantly, there is a slow and highly frequency-specific increase in theta power as a sentence unfolds, possibly related to the formation of an episodic memory trace, or to incremental verbal working memory load.
  • Bastiaansen, M. C. M., Böcker, K. B. E., & Brunia, C. H. M. (2002). ERD as an index of anticipatory attention? Effects of stimulus degradation. Psychophysiology, 39(1), 16-28. doi:10.1111/1469-8986.3910016.

    Abstract

    Previous research has suggested that the stimulus-preceding negativity (SPN) is largely independent of stimulus modality. In contrast, the scalp topography of the event related desynchronization (ERD) related to the anticipation of stimuli providing knowledge of results (KR) is modality dependent. These findings, combined with functional SPN research, lead to the hypothesis that anticipatory ERD reflects anticipatory attention, whereas the SPN mainly depends on the affective-motivational properties of the anticipated stimulus. To further investigate the prestimulus ERD, and compare this measure with the SPN, 12 participants performed a time-estimation task, and were informed about the quality of their time estimation by an auditory or a visual stimulus providing KR. The KR stimuli could be either intact or degraded. Auditory degraded KR stimuli were less effective than other KR stimuli in guiding subsequent behavior, and were preceded by a larger SPN. There were no effects of degradation on the SPN in the visual modality. Preceding auditory KR stimuli no ERD was present, whereas preceding visual stimuli an occipital ERD was found. However, contrary to expectation, the latter was larger preceding intact than preceding degraded stimuli. It is concluded that the data largely agree with an interpretation of the pre-KR SPN as a reflection of the anticipation of the affective-motivational value of KR stimuli, and of the prestimulus ERD as a perceptual anticipatory attention process.
  • Bastiaansen, M. C. M., Van Berkum, J. J. A., & Hagoort, P. (2002). Syntactic processing modulates the θ rhythm of the human EEG. NeuroImage, 17, 1479-1492. doi:10.1006/nimg.2002.1275.

    Abstract

    Changes in oscillatory brain dynamics can be studied by means of induced band power (IBP) analyses, which quantify event-related changes in amplitude of frequency-specific EEG rhythms. Such analyses capture EEG phenomena that are not part of traditional event-related potential measures. The present study investigated whether IBP changes in the δ, θ, and α frequency ranges are sensitive to syntactic violations in sentences. Subjects read sentences that either were correct or contained a syntactic violation. The violations were either grammatical gender agreement violations, where a prenominal adjective was not appropriately inflected for the head noun's gender, or number agreement violations, in which a plural quantifier was combined with a singular head noun. IBP changes of the concurrently measured EEG were computed in five frequency bands of 2-Hz width, individually adjusted on the basis of subjects' α peak, ranging approximately from 2 to 12 Hz. Words constituting a syntactic violation elicited larger increases in θ power than the same words in a correct sentence context, in an interval of 300–500 ms after word onset. Of all the frequency bands studied, this was true for the θ frequency band only. The scalp topography of this effect was different for different violations: following number violations a left-hemispheric dominance was found, whereas gender violations elicited a right-hemisphere dominance of the θ power increase. Possible interpretations of this effect are considered in closing.
  • Bauer, B. L. M. (1998). Impersonal verbs in Italic. Their development from an Indo-European perspective. Journal of Indo-European Studies, 26, 91-120.
  • Bauer, B. L. M. (1998). Language loss in Gaul: Socio-historical and linguistic factors in language conflict. Southwest Journal of Linguistics, 15, 23-44.
  • Bauer, B. L. M. (2002). Variability in word order: Adjectives and comparatives in Latin, Romance, and Germanic. Southwest Journal of Linguistics, 20, 19-50.
  • Belke, E., & Meyer, A. S. (2002). Tracking the time course of multidimensional stimulus discrimination: Analyses of viewing patterns and processing times during "same''-"different'' decisions. European Journal of Cognitive Psychology, 14(2), 237-266. doi:10.1080/09541440143000050.

    Abstract

    We investigated the time course of conjunctive ''same''-''different'' judgements for visually presented object pairs by means of combined reaction time and on-line eye movement measurements. The analyses of viewing patterns, viewing times, and reaction times showed that participants engaged in a parallel self-terminating search for differences. In addition, the results obtained for objects differing in only one dimension suggest that processing times may depend on the relative codability of the stimulus dimensions. The results are reviewed in a broader framework in view of higher-order processes. We propose that overspecifications of colour, often found in object descriptions, may have an ''early'' visual rather than a ''late'' linguistic origin. In a parallel assessment of the detection materials, participants overspecified the objects' colour substantially more often than their size. We argue that referential overspecifications of colour are largely attributable to mechanisms of visual discrimination.
  • Bock, K., Irwin, D. E., Davidson, D. J., & Levelt, W. J. M. (2003). Minding the clock. Journal of Memory and Language, 48, 653-685. doi:10.1016/S0749-596X(03)00007-X.

    Abstract

    Telling time is an exercise in coordinating language production with visual perception. By coupling different ways of saying times with different ways of seeing them, the performance of time-telling can be used to track cognitive transformations from visual to verbal information in connected speech. To accomplish this, we used eyetracking measures along with measures of speech timing during the production of time expressions. Our findings suggest that an effective interface between what has been seen and what is to be said can be constructed within 300 ms. This interface underpins a preverbal plan or message that appears to guide a comparatively slow, strongly incremental formulation of phrases. The results begin to trace the divide between seeing and saying -or thinking and speaking- that must be bridged during the creation of even the most prosaic utterances of a language.
  • Bohnemeyer, J. (2002). [Review of the book Explorations in linguistic relativity ed. by Martin Pütz and Marjolijn H. Verspoor]. Language in Society, 31(3), 452-456. doi:DOI: 10.1017.S004740502020316502020316.
  • Bohnemeyer, J. (2003). Invisible time lines in the fabric of events: Temporal coherence in Yukatek narratives. Journal of Linguistic Anthropology, 13(2), 139-162. doi:10.1525/jlin.2003.13.2.139.

    Abstract

    This article examines how narratives are structured in a language in which event order is largely not coded. Yucatec Maya lacks both tense inflections and temporal connectives corresponding to English after and before. It is shown that the coding of events in Yucatec narratives is subject to a strict iconicity constraint within paragraph boundaries. Aspectual viewpoint shifting is used to reconcile iconicity preservation with the requirements of a more flexible narrative structure.
  • Böttner, M. (1998). A collective extension of relational grammar. Logic Journal of the IGPL, 6(2), 175-793. doi:10.1093/jigpal/6.2.175.

    Abstract

    Relational grammar was proposed in Suppes (1976) as a semantical grammar for natural language. Fragments considered so far are restricted to distributive notions. In this article, relational grammar is extended to collective notions.
  • Li, P., & Bowerman, M. (1998). The acquisition of lexical and grammatical aspect in Chinese. First Language, 18, 311-350. doi:10.1177/014272379801805404.

    Abstract

    This study reports three experiments on how children learning Mandarin Chinese comprehend and use aspect markers. These experiments examine the role of lexical aspect in children's acquisition of grammatical aspect. Results provide converging evidence for children's early sensitivity to (1) the association between atelic verbs and the imperfective aspect markers zai, -zhe, and -ne, and (2) the association between telic verbs and the perfective aspect marker -le. Children did not show a sensitivity in their use or understanding of aspect markers to the difference between stative and activity verbs or between semelfactive and activity verbs. These results are consistent with Slobin's (1985) basic child grammar hypothesis that the contrast between process and result is important in children's early acquisition of temporal morphology. In contrast, they are inconsistent with Bickerton's (1981, 1984) language bioprogram hypothesis that the distinctions between state and process and between punctual and nonpunctual are preprogrammed into language learners. We suggest new ways of looking at the results in the light of recent probabilistic hypotheses that emphasize the role of input, prototypes and connectionist representations.
  • Brown, P. (1998). Conversational structure and language acquisition: The role of repetition in Tzeltal adult and child speech. Journal of Linguistic Anthropology, 8(2), 197-221. doi:10.1525/jlin.1998.8.2.197.

    Abstract

    When Tzeltal children in the Mayan community of Tenejapa, in southern Mexico, begin speaking, their production vocabulary consists predominantly of verb roots, in contrast to the dominance of nouns in the initial vocabulary of first‐language learners of Indo‐European languages. This article proposes that a particular Tzeltal conversational feature—known in the Mayanist literature as "dialogic repetition"—provides a context that facilitates the early analysis and use of verbs. Although Tzeltal babies are not treated by adults as genuine interlocutors worthy of sustained interaction, dialogic repetition in the speech the children are exposed to may have an important role in revealing to them the structural properties of the language, as well as in socializing the collaborative style of verbal interaction adults favor in this community.
  • Brown, P. (1998). Children's first verbs in Tzeltal: Evidence for an early verb category. Linguistics, 36(4), 713-753.

    Abstract

    A major finding in studies of early vocabulary acquisition has been that children tend to learn a lot of nouns early but make do with relatively few verbs, among which semantically general-purpose verbs like do, make, get, have, give, come, go, and be play a prominent role. The preponderance of nouns is explained in terms of nouns labelling concrete objects beings “easier” to learn than verbs, which label relational categories. Nouns label “natural categories” observable in the world, verbs label more linguistically and culturally specific categories of events linking objects belonging to such natural categories (Gentner 1978, 1982; Clark 1993). This view has been challenged recently by data from children learning certain non-Indo-European languges like Korean, where children have an early verb explosion and verbs dominate in early child utterances. Children learning the Mayan language Tzeltal also acquire verbs early, prior to any noun explosion as measured by production. Verb types are roughly equivalent to noun types in children’s beginning production vocabulary and soon outnumber them. At the one-word stage children’s verbs mostly have the form of a root stripped of affixes, correctly segmented despite structural difficulties. Quite early (before the MLU 2.0 point) there is evidence of productivity of some grammatical markers (although they are not always present): the person-marking affixes cross-referencing core arguments, and the completive/incompletive aspectual distinctions. The Tzeltal facts argue against a natural-categories explanation for childre’s early vocabulary, in favor of a view emphasizing the early effects of language-specific properties of the input. They suggest that when and how a child acquires a “verb” category is centrally influenced by the structural properties of the input, and that the semantic structure of the language - where the referential load is concentrated - plays a fundamental role in addition to distributional facts.
  • Brown, P. (1998). [Review of the book by A.J. Wootton, Interaction and the development of mind]. Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 4(4), 816-817.
  • Brown, P. (1989). [Review of the book Language, gender, and sex in comparative perspective ed. by Susan U. Philips, Susan Steeleand Christine Tanz]. Man, 24(1), 192.
  • Brown, P. (1998). La identificación de las raíces verbales en Tzeltal (Maya): Cómo lo hacen los niños? Función, 17-18, 121-146.

    Abstract

    This is a Spanish translation of Brown 1997.
  • Burenhult, N. (2003). Attention, accessibility, and the addressee: The case of the Jahai demonstrative ton. Pragmatics, 13(3), 363-379.
  • Castro-Caldas, A., Petersson, K. M., Reis, A., Stone-Elander, S., & Ingvar, M. (1998). The illiterate brain: Learning to read and write during childhood influences the functional organization of the adult brain. Brain, 121, 1053-1063. doi:10.1093/brain/121.6.1053.

    Abstract

    Learning a specific skill during childhood may partly determine the functional organization of the adult brain. This hypothesis led us to study oral language processing in illiterate subjects who, for social reasons, had never entered school and had no knowledge of reading or writing. In a brain activation study using PET and statistical parametric mapping, we compared word and pseudoword repetition in literate and illiterate subjects. Our study confirms behavioural evidence of different phonological processing in illiterate subjects. During repetition of real words, the two groups performed similarly and activated similar areas of the brain. In contrast, illiterate subjects had more difficulty repeating pseudowords correctly and did not activate the same neural structures as literates. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that learning the written form of language (orthography) interacts with the function of oral language. Our results indicate that learning to read and write during childhood influences the functional organization of the adult human brain.
  • Cho, T., Jun, S.-A., & Ladefoged, P. (2002). Acoustic and aerodynamic correlates of Korean stops and fricatives. Journal of Phonetics, 30(2), 193-228. doi:10.1006/jpho.2001.0153.

    Abstract

    This study examines acoustic and aerodynamic characteristics of consonants in standard Korean and in Cheju, an endangered Korean language. The focus is on the well-known three-way distinction among voiceless stops (i.e., lenis, fortis, aspirated) and the two-way distinction between the voiceless fricatives /s/ and /s*/. While such a typologically unusual contrast among voiceless stops has long drawn the attention of phoneticians and phonologists, there is no single work in the literature that discusses a body of data representing a relatively large number of speakers. This study reports a variety of acoustic and aerodynamic measures obtained from 12 Korean speakers (four speakers of Seoul Korean and eight speakers of Cheju). Results show that, in addition to findings similar to those reported by others, there are three crucial points worth noting. Firstly, lenis, fortis, and aspirated stops are systematically differentiated from each other by the voice quality of the following vowel. Secondly, these stops are also differentiated by aerodynamic mechanisms. The aspirated and fortis stops are similar in supralaryngeal articulation, but employ a different relation between intraoral pressure and flow. Thirdly, our study suggests that the fricative /s/ is better categorized as “lenis” rather than “aspirated”. The paper concludes with a discussion of the implications of Korean data for theories of the voicing contrast and their phonological representations.
  • Chwilla, D., Hagoort, P., & Brown, C. M. (1998). The mechanism underlying backward priming in a lexical decision task: Spreading activation versus semantic matching. Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, 51A(3), 531-560. doi:10.1080/713755773.

    Abstract

    Koriat (1981) demonstrated that an association from the target to a preceding prime, in the absence of an association from the prime to the target, facilitates lexical decision and referred to this effect as "backward priming". Backward priming is of relevance, because it can provide information about the mechanism underlying semantic priming effects. Following Neely (1991), we distinguish three mechanisms of priming: spreading activation, expectancy, and semantic matching/integration. The goal was to determine which of these mechanisms causes backward priming, by assessing effects of backward priming on a language-relevant ERP component, the N400, and reaction time (RT). Based on previous work, we propose that the N400 priming effect reflects expectancy and semantic matching/integration, but in contrast with RT does not reflect spreading activation. Experiment 1 shows a backward priming effect that is qualitatively similar for the N400 and RT in a lexical decision task. This effect was not modulated by an ISI manipulation. Experiment 2 clarifies that the N400 backward priming effect reflects genuine changes in N400 amplitude and cannot be ascribed to other factors. We will argue that these backward priming effects cannot be due to expectancy but are best accounted for in terms of semantic matching/integration.
  • Cooper, N., Cutler, A., & Wales, R. (2002). Constraints of lexical stress on lexical access in English: Evidence from native and non-native listeners. Language and Speech, 45(3), 207-228.

    Abstract

    Four cross-modal priming experiments and two forced-choice identification experiments investigated the use of suprasegmental cues to stress in the recognition of spoken English words, by native (English-speaking) and non- native (Dutch) listeners. Previous results had indicated that suprasegmental information was exploited in lexical access by Dutch but not by English listeners. For both listener groups, recognition of visually presented target words was faster, in comparison to a control condition, after stress-matching spoken primes, either monosyllabic (mus- from MUsic /muSEum) or bisyl labic (admi- from ADmiral/admiRAtion). For native listeners, the effect of stress-mismatching bisyllabic primes was not different from that of control primes, but mismatching monosyllabic primes produced partial facilitation. For non-native listeners, both bisyllabic and monosyllabic stress-mismatching primes produced partial facilitation. Native English listeners thus can exploit suprasegmental information in spoken-word recognition, but information from two syllables is used more effectively than information from one syllable. Dutch listeners are less proficient at using suprasegmental information in English than in their native language, but, as in their native language, use mono- and bisyllabic information to an equal extent. In forced-choice identification, Dutch listeners outperformed native listeners at correctly assigning a monosyllabic fragment (e.g., mus-) to one of two words differing in stress.
  • Costa, A., Cutler, A., & Sebastian-Galles, N. (1998). Effects of phoneme repertoire on phoneme decision. Perception and Psychophysics, 60, 1022-1031.

    Abstract

    In three experiments, listeners detected vowel or consonant targets in lists of CV syllables constructed from five vowels and five consonants. Responses were faster in a predictable context (e.g., listening for a vowel target in a list of syllables all beginning with the same consonant) than in an unpredictable context (e.g., listening for a vowel target in a list of syllables beginning with different consonants). In Experiment 1, the listeners’ native language was Dutch, in which vowel and consonant repertoires are similar in size. The difference between predictable and unpredictable contexts was comparable for vowel and consonant targets. In Experiments 2 and 3, the listeners’ native language was Spanish, which has four times as many consonants as vowels; here effects of an unpredictable consonant context on vowel detection were significantly greater than effects of an unpredictable vowel context on consonant detection. This finding suggests that listeners’ processing of phonemes takes into account the constitution of their language’s phonemic repertoire and the implications that this has for contextual variability.
  • Cox, S., Rösler, D., & Skiba, R. (1989). A tailor-made database for language teaching material. Literary & Linguistic Computing, 4(4), 260-264.
  • Cozijn, R., Vonk, W., & Noordman, L. G. M. (2003). Afleidingen uit oogbewegingen: De invloed van het connectief 'omdat' op het maken van causale inferenties. Gramma/TTT, 9, 141-156.
  • Crago, M. B., Chen, C., Genesee, F., & Allen, S. E. M. (1998). Power and deference. Journal for a Just and Caring Education, 4(1), 78-95.
  • Cutler, A. (1979). Contemporary reaction to Rudolf Meringer’s speech error research. Historiograpia Linguistica, 6, 57-76.
  • Cutler, A., Howard, D., & Patterson, K. E. (1989). Misplaced stress on prosody: A reply to Black and Byng. Cognitive Neuropsychology, 6, 67-83.

    Abstract

    The recent claim by Black and Byng (1986) that lexical access in reading is subject to prosodic constraints is examined and found to be unsupported. The evidence from impaired reading which Black and Byng report is based on poorly controlled stimulus materials and is inadequately analysed and reported. An alternative explanation of their findings is proposed, and new data are reported for which this alternative explanation can account but their model cannot. Finally, their proposal is shown to be theoretically unmotivated and in conflict with evidence from normal reading.
  • Cutler, A. (2002). Native listeners. European Review, 10(1), 27-41. doi:10.1017/S1062798702000030.

    Abstract

    Becoming a native listener is the necessary precursor to becoming a native speaker. Babies in the first year of life undertake a remarkable amount of work; by the time they begin to speak, they have perceptually mastered the phonological repertoire and phoneme co-occurrence probabilities of the native language, and they can locate familiar word-forms in novel continuous-speech contexts. The skills acquired at this early stage form a necessary part of adult listening. However, the same native listening skills also underlie problems in listening to a late-acquired non-native language, accounting for why in such a case listening (an innate ability) is sometimes paradoxically more difficult than, for instance, reading (a learned ability).
  • Cutler, A., & Otake, T. (2002). Rhythmic categories in spoken-word recognition. Journal of Memory and Language, 46(2), 296-322. doi:10.1006/jmla.2001.2814.

    Abstract

    Rhythmic categories such as morae in Japanese or stress units in English play a role in the perception of spoken
    language. We examined this role in Japanese, since recent evidence suggests that morae may intervene as
    structural units in word recognition. First, we found that traditional puns more often substituted part of a mora
    than a whole mora. Second, when listeners reconstructed distorted words, e.g. panorama from panozema, responses
    were faster and more accurate when only a phoneme was distorted (panozama, panorema) than when a
    whole CV mora was distorted (panozema). Third, lexical decisions on the same nonwords were better predicted
    by duration and number of phonemes from nonword uniqueness point to word end than by number of morae. Our
    results indicate no role for morae in early spoken-word processing; we propose that rhythmic categories constrain
    not initial lexical activation but subsequent processes of speech segmentation and selection among word candidates.
  • Cutler, A. (1989). Straw modules [Commentary/Massaro: Speech perception]. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 12, 760-762.
  • Cutler, A. (1989). The new Victorians. New Scientist, (1663), 66.
  • Cutler, A., Demuth, K., & McQueen, J. M. (2002). Universality versus language-specificity in listening to running speech. Psychological Science, 13(3), 258-262. doi:10.1111/1467-9280.00447.

    Abstract

    Recognizing spoken language involves automatic activation of multiple candidate words. The process of selection between candidates is made more efficient by inhibition of embedded words (like egg in beg) that leave a portion of the input stranded (here, b). Results from European languages suggest that this inhibition occurs when consonants are stranded but not when syllables are stranded. The reason why leftover syllables do not lead to inhibition could be that in principle they might themselves be words; in European languages, a syllable can be a word. In Sesotho (a Bantu language), however, a single syllable cannot be a word. We report that in Sesotho, word recognition is inhibited by stranded consonants, but stranded monosyllables produce no more difficulty than stranded bisyllables (which could be Sesotho words). This finding suggests that the viability constraint which inhibits spurious embedded word candidates is not sensitive to language-specific word structure, but is universal.
  • Dahan, D., Tanenhaus, M. K., & Chambers, C. G. (2002). Accent and reference resolution in spoken-language comprehension. Journal of Memory and Language, 47(2), 292-314. doi:10.1016/S0749-596X(02)00001-3.

    Abstract

    The role of accent in reference resolution was investigated by monitoring eye fixations to lexical competitors (e.g., candy and candle ) as participants followed prerecorded instructions to move objects above or below fixed geometric shapes using a computer mouse. In Experiment 1, the first utterance instructed participants to move one object above or below a shape (e.g., “Put the candle/candy below the triangle”) and the second utterance contained an accented or deaccented definite noun phrase which referred to the same object or introduced a new entity (e.g., “Now put the CANDLE above the square” vs. “Now put the candle ABOVE THE SQUARE”). Fixations to the competitor (e.g., candy ) demonstrated a bias to interpret deaccented nouns as anaphoric and accented nouns as nonanaphoric. Experiment 2 used only accented nouns in the second instruction, varying whether the referent of this second instruction was the Theme of the first instruction (e.g., “Put the candle below the triangle”) or the Goal of the first instruction (e.g., “Put the necklace below the candle”). Participants preferred to interpret accented noun phrases as referring to a previously mentioned nonfocused entity (the Goal) rather than as introducing a new unmentioned entity.
  • Damian, M. F., & Abdel Rahman, R. (2003). Semantic priming in the naming of objects and famous faces. British Journal of Psychology, 94(4), 517-527.

    Abstract

    Researchers interested in face processing have recently debated whether access to the name of a known person occurs in parallel with retrieval of semantic-biographical codes, rather than in a sequential fashion. Recently, Schweinberger, Burton, and Kelly (2001) took a failure to obtain a semantic context effect in a manual syllable judgment task on names of famous faces as support for this position. In two experiments, we compared the effects of visually presented categorically related prime words with either objects (e.g. prime: animal; target: dog) or faces of celebrities (e.g. prime: actor; target: Bruce Willis) as targets. Targets were either manually categorized with regard to the number of syllables (as in Schweinberger et al.), or they were overtly named. For neither objects nor faces was semantic priming obtained in syllable decisions; crucially, however, priming was obtained when objects and faces were overtly named. These results suggest that both face and object naming are susceptible to semantic context effects
  • Den Os, E., & Boves, L. (2002). BabelWeb project develops multilingual guidelines. Multilingual Computing and Technologies, 13(1), 33-36.

    Abstract

    European cooperative effort seeks best practices architecture and procedures for international sites
  • Dimroth, C., & Lasser, I. (Eds.). (2002). Finite options: How L1 and L2 learners cope with the acquisition of finiteness [Special Issue]. Linguistics, 40(4).
  • Dimroth, C., & Lasser, I. (2002). Finite options: How L1 and L2 learners cope with the acquisition of finiteness. Linguistics, 40(4), 647-651. doi:10.1515/ling.2002.027.
  • Dimroth, C. (1998). Indiquer la portée en allemand L2: Une étude longitudinale de l'acquisition des particules de portée. AILE (Acquisition et Interaction en Langue étrangère), 11, 11-34.
  • Dimroth, C. (2002). Topics, assertions and additive words: How L2 learners get from information structure to target-language syntax. Linguistics, 40(4), 891-923. doi:10.1515/ling.2002.033.

    Abstract

    The article compares the integration of topic-related additive words at different stages of untutored L2 acquisition. Data stem from an ‘‘additive-elicitation task’’ that was designed in order to capture topic-related additive words in a context that is at the same time controlled for the underlying information structure and nondeviant from other kinds of narrative discourse. We relate the distinction between stressed and nonstressed forms of the German scope particles and adverbials auch ‘also’, noch ‘another’, wieder ‘again’, and immer noch ‘still’ to a uniform, information-structure-based principle: the stressed variants have scope over the topic information of the relevant utterances. It is then the common function of these additive words to express the additive link between the topic of the present utterance and some previous topic for which the same state of affairs is claimed to hold. This phenomenon has often been referred to as ‘‘contrastive topic,’’ but contrary to what this term suggests, these topic elements are by no means deviant from the default in coherent discourse. In the underlying information structure, the validity of some given state of affairs for the present topic must be under discussion. Topic-related additive words then express that the state of affairs indeed applies to this topic, their function therefore coming close to the function of assertion marking. While this functional correspondence goes along with the formal organization of the basic stages of untutored second-language acquisition, its expression brings linguistic constraints into conflict when the acquisition of finiteness pushes learners to reorganize their utterances according to target-language syntax.
  • Dunn, M. (2003). Pioneers of Island Melanesia project. Oceania Newsletter, 30/31, 1-3.
  • Dunn, M., Reesink, G., & Terrill, A. (2002). The East Papuan languages: A preliminary typological appraisal. Oceanic Linguistics, 41(1), 28-62.

    Abstract

    This paper examines the Papuan languages of Island Melanesia, with a view to considering their typological similarities and differences. The East Papuan languages are thought to be the descendants of the languages spoken by the original inhabitants of Island Melanesia, who arrived in the area up to 50,000 years ago. The Oceanic Austronesian languages are thought to have come into the area with the Lapita peoples 3,500 years ago. With this historical backdrop in view, our paper seeks to investigate the linguistic relationships between the scattered Papuan languages of Island Melanesia. To do this, we survey various structural features, including syntactic patterns such as constituent order in clauses and noun phrases and other features of clause structure, paradigmatic structures of pronouns, and the structure of verbal morphology. In particular, we seek to discern similarities between the languages that might call for closer investigation, with a view to establishing genetic relatedness between some or all of the languages. In addition, in examining structural relationships between languages, we aim to discover whether it is possible to distinguish between original Papuan elements and diffused Austronesian elements of these languages. As this is a vast task, our paper aims merely to lay the groundwork for investigation into these and related questions.
  • Enard, W., Przeworski, M., Fisher, S. E., Lai, C. S. L., Wiebe, V., Kitano, T., Pääbo, S., & Monaco, A. P. (2002). Molecular evolution of FOXP2, a gene involved in speech and language [Letters to Nature]. Nature, 418, 869-872. doi:10.1038/nature01025.

    Abstract

    Language is a uniquely human trait likely to have been a prerequisite for the development of human culture. The ability to develop articulate speech relies on capabilities, such as fine control of the larynx and mouth, that are absent in chimpanzees and other great apes. FOXP2 is the first gene relevant to the human ability to develop language. A point mutation in FOXP2 co-segregates with a disorder in a family in which half of the members have severe articulation difficulties accompanied by linguistic and grammatical impairment. This gene is disrupted by translocation in an unrelated individual who has a similar disorder. Thus, two functional copies of FOXP2 seem to be required for acquisition of normal spoken language. We sequenced the complementary DNAs that encode the FOXP2 protein in the chimpanzee, gorilla, orang-utan, rhesus macaque and mouse, and compared them with the human cDNA. We also investigated intraspecific variation of the human FOXP2 gene. Here we show that human FOXP2 contains changes in amino-acid coding and a pattern of nucleotide polymorphism, which strongly suggest that this gene has been the target of selection during recent human evolution.
  • Enfield, N. J. (2003). Demonstratives in space and interaction: Data from Lao speakers and implications for semantic analysis. Language, 79(1), 82-117.

    Abstract

    The semantics of simple (i.e. two-term) systems of demonstratives have in general hitherto been treated as inherently spatial and as marking a symmetrical opposition of distance (‘proximal’ versus ‘distal’), assuming the speaker as a point of origin. More complex systems are known to add further distinctions, such as visibility or elevation, but are assumed to build on basic distinctions of distance. Despite their inherently context-dependent nature, little previous work has based the analysis of demonstratives on evidence of their use in real interactional situations. In this article, video recordings of spontaneous interaction among speakers of Lao (Southwestern Tai, Laos) are examined in an analysis of the two Lao demonstrative determiners nii4 and nan4. A hypothesis of minimal encoded semantics is tested against rich contextual information, and the hypothesis is shown to be consistent with the data. Encoded conventional meanings must be kept distinct from contingent contextual information and context-dependent pragmatic implicatures. Based on examples of the two Lao demonstrative determiners in exophoric uses, the following claims are made. The term nii4 is a semantically general demonstrative, lacking specification of ANY spatial property (such as location or distance). The term nan4 specifies that the referent is ‘not here’ (encoding ‘location’ but NOT ‘distance’). Anchoring the semantic specification in a deictic primitive ‘here’ allows a strictly discrete intensional distinction to be mapped onto an extensional range of endless elasticity. A common ‘proximal’ spatial interpretation for the semantically more general term nii4 arises from the paradigmatic opposition of the two demonstrative determiners. This kind of analysis suggests a reappraisal of our general understanding of the semantics of demonstrative systems universally. To investigate the question in sufficient detail, however, rich contextual data (preferably collected on video) is necessary
  • Enfield, N. J. (2002). How to define 'Lao', 'Thai', and 'Isan' language? A view from linguistic science. Tai Culture, 7(1), 62-67.

    Abstract

    This article argues that it is not possible to establish distinctions between 'Lao', 'Thai', and 'Isan' as seperate languages or dialects by appealing to objective criteria. 'Lao', 'Thai', and 'Isan' are conceived linguistics varieties, and the ground-level reality reveals a great deal of variation, much of it not coinciding with the geographical boundaries of the 'Laos', 'Isan', and 'non-Isan Thailand' areas. Those who promote 'Lao', 'Thai', and/or 'Isan' as distinct linguistic varieties have subjective (e.g. political and/or sentimental) reasons for doing so. Objective linguistic criteria are not sufficient
  • Enfield, N. J., & Wierzbicka, A. (2002). Introduction: The body in description of emotion. Pragmatics and Cognition, 10(1), 1-24. doi:10.1075/pc.10.12.02enf.

    Abstract

    Anthropologists and linguists have long been aware that the body is explicitly referred to in conventional description of emotion in languages around the world. There is abundant linguistic data showing expression of emotions in terms of their imagined ‘locus’ in the physical body. The most important methodological issue in the study of emotions is language, for the ways people talk give us access to ‘folk descriptions’ of the emotions. ‘Technical terminology’, whether based on English or otherwise, is not excluded from this ‘folk’ status. It may appear to be safely ‘scientific’ and thus culturally neutral, but in fact it is not: technical English is a variety of English and reflects, to some extent, culture-specific ways of thinking (and categorising) associated with the English language. People — as researchers studying other people, or as people in real-life social association — cannot directly access the emotional experience of others, and language is the usual mode of ‘packaging’ one’s experience so it may be accessible to others. Careful description of linguistic data from as broad as possible a cross-linguistic base is thus an important part of emotion research. All people experience biological events and processes associated with certain thoughts (or, as psychologists say, ‘appraisals’), but there is more to ‘emotion’ than just these physiological phenomena. Speakers of some languages talk about their emotional experiences as if they are located in some internal organ such as ‘the liver’, yet they cannot localise feeling in this physical organ. This phenomenon needs to be understood better, and one of the problems is finding a method of comparison that allows us to compare descriptions from different languages which show apparently great formal and semantic variation. Some simple concepts including feel and body are universal or near-universal, and as such are good candidates for terms of description which may help to eradicate confusion and exoticism from cross-linguistic comparison and semantic typology. Semantic analysis reveals great variation in concepts of emotion across languages and cultures — but such analysis requires a sound and well-founded methodology. While leaving room for different approaches to the task, we suggest that such a methodology can be based on empirically established linguistic universal (or near-universal) concepts, and on ‘cognitive scenarios’ articulated in terms of these concepts. Also, we warn against the danger of exoticism involved in taking all body part references ‘literally’. Above all, we argue that what is needed is a combination of empirical cross-linguistic investigations and a theoretical and methodological awareness, recognising the impossibility of exploring other people’s emotions without keeping language in focus: both as an object and as a tool of study.
  • Enfield, N. J. (2002). Semantic analysis of body parts in emotion terminology: Avoiding the exoticisms of 'obstinate monosemy' and 'online extension'. Pragmatics and Cognition, 10(1), 85-106. doi:10.1075/pc.10.12.05enf.

    Abstract

    Investigation of the emotions entails reference to words and expressions conventionally used for the description of emotion experience. Important methodological issues arise for emotion researchers, and the issues are of similarly central concern in linguistic semantics more generally. I argue that superficial and/or inconsistent description of linguistic meaning can have seriously misleading results. This paper is firstly a critique of standards in emotion research for its tendency to underrate and ill-understand linguistic semantics. It is secondly a critique of standards in some approaches to linguistic semantics itself. Two major problems occur. The first is failure to distinguish between conceptually distinct meanings of single words, neglecting the well-established fact that a single phonological string can signify more than one conceptual category (i.e., that words can be polysemous). The second error involves failure to distinguish between two kinds of secondary uses of words: (1) those which are truly active “online” extensions, and (2) those which are conventionalised secondary meanings and not active (qua “extensions”) at all. These semantic considerations are crucial to conclusions one may draw about cognition and conceptualisation based on linguistic evidence.
  • Enfield, N. J. (2003). Producing and editing diagrams using co-speech gesture: Spatializing non-spatial relations in explanations of kinship in Laos. Journal of Linguistic Anthropology, 13(1), 7-50. doi:10.1525/jlin.2003.13.1.7.

    Abstract

    This article presents a description of two sequences of talk by urban speakers of Lao (a southwestern Tai language spoken in Laos) in which co-speech gesture plays a central role in explanations of kinship relations and terminology. The speakers spontaneously use hand gestures and gaze to spatially diagram relationships that have no inherent spatial structure. The descriptive sections of the article are prefaced by a discussion of the semiotic complexity of illustrative gestures and gesture diagrams. Gestured signals feature iconic, indexical, and symbolic components, usually in combination, as well as using motion and three-dimensional space to convey meaning. Such diagrams show temporal persistence and structural integrity despite having been projected in midair by evanescent signals (i.e., handmovements anddirected gaze). Speakers sometimes need or want to revise these spatial representations without destroying their structural integrity. The need to "edit" gesture diagrams involves such techniques as hold-and-drag, hold-and-work-with-free-hand, reassignment-of-old-chunk-tonew-chunk, and move-body-into-new-space.
  • Enfield, N. J. (2003). The definition of WHAT-d'you-call-it: Semantics and pragmatics of 'recognitional deixis'. Journal of Pragmatics, 35(1), 101-117. doi:10.1016/S0378-2166(02)00066-8.

    Abstract

    Words such as what -d'you-call-it raise issues at the heart of the semantics/pragmatics interface. Expressions of this kind are conventionalised and have meanings which, while very general, are explicitly oriented to the interactional nature of the speech context, drawing attention to a speaker's assumption that the listener can figure out what the speaker is referring to. The details of such meanings can account for functional contrast among similar expressions, in a single language as well as cross-linguistically. The English expressions what -d'you-call-it and you-know-what are compared, along with a comparable Lao expression meaning, roughly, ‘that thing’. Proposed definitions of the meanings of these expressions account for their different patterns of use. These definitions include reference to the speech act participants, a point which supports the view that what -d'you-call-it words can be considered deictic. Issues arising from the descriptive section of this paper include the question of how such terms are derived, as well as their degree of conventionality.
  • Ernestus, M., & Baayen, R. H. (2003). Predicting the unpredictable: The phonological interpretation of neutralized segments in Dutch. Language, 79(1), 5-38.

    Abstract

    Among the most fascinating data for phonology are those showing how speakers incorporate new words and foreign words into their language system, since these data provide cues to the actual principles underlying language. In this article, we address how speakers deal with neutralized obstruents in new words. We formulate four hypotheses and test them on the basis of Dutch word-final obstruents, which are neutral for [voice]. Our experiments show that speakers predict the characteristics ofneutralized segments on the basis ofphonologically similar morphemes stored in the mental lexicon. This effect of the similar morphemes can be modeled in several ways. We compare five models, among them STOCHASTIC OPTIMALITY THEORY and ANALOGICAL MODELING OF LANGUAGE; all perform approximately equally well, but they differ in their complexity, with analogical modeling oflanguage providing the most economical explanation.
  • Ernestus, M., Baayen, R. H., & Schreuder, R. (2002). The recognition of reduced word forms. Brain and Language, 81(1-3), 162-173. doi:10.1006/brln.2001.2514.

    Abstract

    This article addresses the recognition of reduced word forms, which are frequent in casual speech. We describe two experiments on Dutch showing that listeners only recognize highly reduced forms well when these forms are presented in their full context and that the probability that a listener recognizes a word form in limited context is strongly correlated with the degree of reduction of the form. Moreover, we show that the effect of degree of reduction can only partly be interpreted as the effect of the intelligibility of the acoustic signal, which is negatively correlated with degree of reduction. We discuss the consequences of our findings for models of spoken word recognition and especially for the role that storage plays in these models.
  • Faller, M. (2002). The evidential and validational licensing conditions for the Cusco Quechua enclitic-mi. Belgian Journal of Linguistics, 16, 7-21. doi:10.1075/bjl.16.02fa.
  • Felser, C., Roberts, L., Marinis, T., & Gross, R. (2003). The processing of ambiguous sentences by first and second language learners of English. Applied Psycholinguistics, 24(3), 453-489.

    Abstract

    This study investigates the way adult second language (L2) learners of English resolve relative clause attachment ambiguities in sentences such as The dean liked the secretary of the professor who was reading a letter. Two groups of advanced L2 learners of English with Greek or German as their first language participated in a set of off-line and on-line tasks. The results indicate that the L2 learners do not process ambiguous sentences of this type in the same way as adult native speakers of English do. Although the learners’ disambiguation preferences were influenced by lexical–semantic properties of the preposition linking the two potential antecedent noun phrases (of vs. with), there was no evidence that they applied any phrase structure–based ambiguity resolution strategies of the kind that have been claimed to influence sentence processing in monolingual adults. The L2 learners’ performance also differs markedly from the results obtained from 6- to 7-year-old monolingual English children in a parallel auditory study, in that the children’s attachment preferences were not affected by the type of preposition at all. We argue that children, monolingual adults, and adult L2 learners differ in the extent to which they are guided by phrase structure and lexical–semantic information during sentence processing.
  • Fisher, S. E., Lai, C. S., & Monaco, a. A. P. (2003). Deciphering the genetic basis of speech and language disorders. Annual Review of Neuroscience, 26, 57-80. doi:10.1146/annurev.neuro.26.041002.131144.

    Abstract

    A significant number of individuals have unexplained difficulties with acquiring normal speech and language, despite adequate intelligence and environmental stimulation. Although developmental disorders of speech and language are heritable, the genetic basis is likely to involve several, possibly many, different risk factors. Investigations of a unique three-generation family showing monogenic inheritance of speech and language deficits led to the isolation of the first such gene on chromosome 7, which encodes a transcription factor known as FOXP2. Disruption of this gene causes a rare severe speech and language disorder but does not appear to be involved in more common forms of language impairment. Recent genome-wide scans have identified at least four chromosomal regions that may harbor genes influencing the latter, on chromosomes 2, 13, 16, and 19. The molecular genetic approach has potential for dissecting neurological pathways underlying speech and language disorders, but such investigations are only just beginning.
  • Fisher, S. E., & DeFries, J. C. (2002). Developmental dyslexia: Genetic dissection of a complex cognitive trait. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 3, 767-780. doi:10.1038/nrn936.

    Abstract

    Developmental dyslexia, a specific impairment of reading ability despite adequate intelligence and educational opportunity, is one of the most frequent childhood disorders. Since the first documented cases at the beginning of the last century, it has become increasingly apparent that the reading problems of people with dyslexia form part of a heritable neurobiological syndrome. As for most cognitive and behavioural traits, phenotypic definition is fraught with difficulties and the genetic basis is complex, making the isolation of genetic risk factors a formidable challenge. Against such a background, it is notable that several recent studies have reported the localization of genes that influence dyslexia and other language-related traits. These investigations exploit novel research approaches that are relevant to many areas of human neurogenetics.
  • Fisher, S. E., Francks, C., McCracken, J. T., McGough, J. J., Marlow, A. J., MacPhie, I. L., Newbury, D. F., Crawford, L. R., Palmer, C. G. S., Woodward, J. A., Del’Homme, M., Cantwell, D. P., Nelson, S. F., Monaco, A. P., & Smalley, S. L. (2002). A genomewide scan for loci involved in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. American Journal of Human Genetics, 70(5), 1183-1196. doi:10.1086/340112.

    Abstract

    Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common heritable disorder with a childhood onset. Molecular genetic studies of ADHD have previously focused on examining the roles of specific candidate genes, primarily those involved in dopaminergic pathways. We have performed the first systematic genomewide linkage scan for loci influencing ADHD in 126 affected sib pairs, using a ∼10-cM grid of microsatellite markers. Allele-sharing linkage methods enabled us to exclude any loci with a λs of ⩾3 from 96% of the genome and those with a λs of ⩾2.5 from 91%, indicating that there is unlikely to be a major gene involved in ADHD susceptibility in our sample. Under a strict diagnostic scheme we could exclude all screened regions of the X chromosome for a locus-specific λs of ⩾2 in brother-brother pairs, demonstrating that the excess of affected males with ADHD is probably not attributable to a major X-linked effect. Qualitative trait maximum LOD score analyses pointed to a number of chromosomal sites that may contain genetic risk factors of moderate effect. None exceeded genomewide significance thresholds, but LOD scores were >1.5 for regions on 5p12, 10q26, 12q23, and 16p13. Quantitative-trait analysis of ADHD symptom counts implicated a region on 12p13 (maximum LOD 2.6) that also yielded a LOD >1 when qualitative methods were used. A survey of regions containing 36 genes that have been proposed as candidates for ADHD indicated that 29 of these genes, including DRD4 and DAT1, could be excluded for a λs of 2. Only three of the candidates—DRD5, 5HTT, and CALCYON—coincided with sites of positive linkage identified by our screen. Two of the regions highlighted in the present study, 2q24 and 16p13, coincided with the top linkage peaks reported by a recent genome-scan study of autistic sib pairs.
  • Fisher, S. E., Francks, C., Marlow, A. J., MacPhie, I. L., Newbury, D. F., Cardon, L. R., Ishikawa-Brush, Y., Richardson, A. J., Talcott, J. B., Gayán, J., Olson, R. K., Pennington, B. F., Smith, S. D., DeFries, J. C., Stein, J. F., & Monaco, A. P. (2002). Independent genome-wide scans identify a chromosome 18 quantitative-trait locus influencing dyslexia. Nature Genetics, 30(1), 86-91. doi:10.1038/ng792.

    Abstract

    Developmental dyslexia is defined as a specific and significant impairment in reading ability that cannot be explained by deficits in intelligence, learning opportunity, motivation or sensory acuity. It is one of the most frequently diagnosed disorders in childhood, representing a major educational and social problem. It is well established that dyslexia is a significantly heritable trait with a neurobiological basis. The etiological mechanisms remain elusive, however, despite being the focus of intensive multidisciplinary research. All attempts to map quantitative-trait loci (QTLs) influencing dyslexia susceptibility have targeted specific chromosomal regions, so that inferences regarding genetic etiology have been made on the basis of very limited information. Here we present the first two complete QTL-based genome-wide scans for this trait, in large samples of families from the United Kingdom and United States. Using single-point analysis, linkage to marker D18S53 was independently identified as being one of the most significant results of the genome in each scan (P< or =0.0004 for single word-reading ability in each family sample). Multipoint analysis gave increased evidence of 18p11.2 linkage for single-word reading, yielding top empirical P values of 0.00001 (UK) and 0.0004 (US). Measures related to phonological and orthographic processing also showed linkage at this locus. We replicated linkage to 18p11.2 in a third independent sample of families (from the UK), in which the strongest evidence came from a phoneme-awareness measure (most significant P value=0.00004). A combined analysis of all UK families confirmed that this newly discovered 18p QTL is probably a general risk factor for dyslexia, influencing several reading-related processes. This is the first report of QTL-based genome-wide scanning for a human cognitive trait.
  • Fisher, S. E., Vargha-Khadem, F., Watkins, K. E., Monaco, A. P., & Pembrey, M. E. (1998). Localisation of a gene implicated in a severe speech and language disorder. Nature Genetics, 18, 168 -170. doi:10.1038/ng0298-168.

    Abstract

    Between 2 and 5% of children who are otherwise unimpaired have significant difficulties in acquiring expressive and/or receptive language, despite adequate intelligence and opportunity. While twin studies indicate a significant role for genetic factors in developmental disorders of speech and language, the majority of families segregating such disorders show complex patterns of inheritance, and are thus not amenable for conventional linkage analysis. A rare exception is the KE family, a large three-generation pedigree in which approximately half of the members are affected with a severe speech and language disorder which appears to be transmitted as an autosomal dominant monogenic trait. This family has been widely publicised as suffering primarily from a defect in the use of grammatical suffixation rules, thus supposedly supporting the existence of genes specific to grammar. The phenotype, however, is broader in nature, with virtually every aspect of grammar and of language affected. In addition, affected members have a severe orofacial dyspraxia, and their speech is largely incomprehensible to the naive listener. We initiated a genome-wide search for linkage in the KE family and have identified a region on chromosome 7 which co-segregates with the speech and language disorder (maximum lod score = 6.62 at theta = 0.0), confirming autosomal dominant inheritance with full penetrance. Further analysis of microsatellites from within the region enabled us to fine map the locus responsible (designated SPCH1) to a 5.6-cM interval in 7q31, thus providing an important step towards its identification. Isolation of SPCH1 may offer the first insight into the molecular genetics of the developmental process that culminates in speech and language.
  • Francks, C., Fisher, S. E., Marlow, A. J., MacPhie, I. L., Taylor, K. E., Richardson, A. J., Stein, J. F., & Monaco, A. P. (2003). Familial and genetic effects on motor coordination, laterality, and reading-related cognition. American Journal of Psychiatry, 160(11), 1970-1977. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.160.11.1970.

    Abstract

    OBJECTIVE: Recent research has provided evidence for a genetically mediated association between language or reading-related cognitive deficits and impaired motor coordination. Other studies have identified relationships between lateralization of hand skill and cognitive abilities. With a large sample, the authors aimed to investigate genetic relationships between measures of reading-related cognition, hand motor skill, and hand skill lateralization.

    METHOD: The authors applied univariate and bivariate correlation and familiality analyses to a range of measures. They also performed genomewide linkage analysis of hand motor skill in a subgroup of 195 sibling pairs.

    RESULTS: Hand motor skill was significantly familial (maximum heritability=41%), as were reading-related measures. Hand motor skill was weakly but significantly correlated with reading-related measures, such as nonword reading and irregular word reading. However, these correlations were not significantly familial in nature, and the authors did not observe linkage of hand motor skill to any chromosomal regions implicated in susceptibility to dyslexia. Lateralization of hand skill was not correlated with reading or cognitive ability.

    CONCLUSIONS: The authors confirmed a relationship between lower motor ability and poor reading performance. However, the genetic effects on motor skill and reading ability appeared to be largely or wholly distinct, suggesting that the correlation between these traits may have arisen from environmental influences. Finally, the authors found no evidence that reading disability and/or low general cognitive ability were associated with ambidexterity.
  • Francks, C., DeLisi, L. E., Fisher, S. E., Laval, S. H., Rue, J. E., Stein, J. F., & Monaco, A. P. (2003). Confirmatory evidence for linkage of relative hand skill to 2p12-q11 [Letter to the editor]. American Journal of Human Genetics, 72(2), 499-502. doi:10.1086/367548.
  • Francks, C., Fisher, S. E., MacPhie, I. L., Richardson, A. J., Marlow, A. J., Stein, J. F., & Monaco, A. P. (2002). A genomewide linkage screen for relative hand skill in sibling pairs. American Journal of Human Genetics, 70(3), 800-805. doi:10.1086/339249.

    Abstract

    Genomewide quantitative-trait locus (QTL) linkage analysis was performed using a continuous measure of relative hand skill (PegQ) in a sample of 195 reading-disabled sibling pairs from the United Kingdom. This was the first genomewide screen for any measure related to handedness. The mean PegQ in the sample was equivalent to that of normative data, and PegQ was not correlated with tests of reading ability (correlations between −0.13 and 0.05). Relative hand skill could therefore be considered normal within the sample. A QTL on chromosome 2p11.2-12 yielded strong evidence for linkage to PegQ (empirical P=.00007), and another suggestive QTL on 17p11-q23 was also identified (empirical P=.002). The 2p11.2-12 locus was further analyzed in an independent sample of 143 reading-disabled sibling pairs, and this analysis yielded an empirical P=.13. Relative hand skill therefore is probably a complex multifactorial phenotype with a heterogeneous background, but nevertheless is amenable to QTL-based gene-mapping approaches.
  • Francks, C., Fisher, S. E., Olson, R. K., Pennington, B. F., Smith, S. D., DeFries, J. C., & Monaco, A. P. (2002). Fine mapping of the chromosome 2p12-16 dyslexia susceptibility locus: Quantitative association analysis and positional candidate genes SEMA4F and OTX1. Psychiatric Genetics, 12(1), 35-41.

    Abstract

    A locus on chromosome 2p12-16 has been implicated in dyslexia susceptibility by two independent linkage studies, including our own study of 119 nuclear twin-based families, each with at least one reading-disabled child. Nonetheless, no variant of any gene has been reported to show association with dyslexia, and no consistent clinical evidence exists to identify candidate genes with any strong a priori logic. We used 21 microsatellite markers spanning 2p12-16 to refine our 1-LOD unit linkage support interval to 12cM between D2S337 and D2S286. Then, in quantitative association analysis, two microsatellites yielded P values<0.05 across a range of reading-related measures (D2S2378 and D2S2114). The exon/intron borders of two positional candidate genes within the region were characterized, and the exons were screened for polymorphisms. The genes were Semaphorin4F (SEMA4F), which encodes a protein involved in axonal growth cone guidance, and OTX1, encoding a homeodomain transcription factor involved in forebrain development. Two non-synonymous single nucleotide polymorphisms were found in SEMA4F, each with a heterozygosity of 0.03. One intronic single nucleotide polymorphism between exons 12 and 13 of SEMA4F was tested for quantitative association, but no significant association was found. Only one single nucleotide polymorphism was found in OTX1, which was exonic but silent. Our data therefore suggest that linkage with reading disability at 2p12-16 is not caused by coding variants of SEMA4F or OTX1. Our study outlines the approach necessary for the identification of genetic variants causing dyslexia susceptibility in an epidemiological population of dyslexics.
  • Francks, C., DeLisi, L. E., Shaw, S. H., Fisher, S. E., Richardson, A. J., Stein, J. F., & Monaco, A. P. (2003). Parent-of-origin effects on handedness and schizophrenia susceptibility on chromosome 2p12-q11. Human Molecular Genetics, 12(24), 3225-3230. doi:10.1093/hmg/ddg362.

    Abstract

    Schizophrenia and non-right-handedness are moderately associated, and both traits are often accompanied by abnormalities of asymmetrical brain morphology or function. We have found linkage previously of chromosome 2p12-q11 to a quantitative measure of handedness, and we have also found linkage of schizophrenia/schizoaffective disorder to this same chromosomal region in a separate study. Now, we have found that in one of our samples (191 reading-disabled sibling pairs), the relative hand skill of siblings was correlated more strongly with paternal than maternal relative hand skill. This led us to re-analyse 2p12-q11 under parent-of-origin linkage models. We found linkage of relative hand skill in the RD siblings to 2p12-q11 with P=0.0000037 for paternal identity-by-descent sharing, whereas the maternally inherited locus was not linked to the trait (P>0.2). Similarly, in affected-sib-pair analysis of our schizophrenia dataset (241 sibling pairs), we found linkage to schizophrenia for paternal sharing with LOD=4.72, P=0.0000016, within 3 cM of the peak linkage to relative hand skill. Maternal linkage across the region was weak or non-significant. These similar paternal-specific linkages suggest that the causative genetic effects on 2p12-q11 are related. The linkages may be due to a single maternally imprinted influence on lateralized brain development that contains common functional polymorphisms.
  • Francks, C., MacPhie, I. L., & Monaco, A. P. (2002). The genetic basis of dyslexia. The Lancet Neurology, 1(8), 483-490. doi:10.1016/S1474-4422(02)00221-1.

    Abstract

    Dyslexia, a disorder of reading and spelling, is a heterogeneous neurological syndrome with a complex genetic and environmental aetiology. People with dyslexia differ in their individual profiles across a range of cognitive, physiological, and behavioural measures related to reading disability. Some or all of the subtypes of dyslexia might have partly or wholly distinct genetic causes. An understanding of the role of genetics in dyslexia could help to diagnose and treat susceptible children more effectively and rapidly than is currently possible and in ways that account for their individual disabilities. This knowledge will also give new insights into the neurobiology of reading and language cognition. Genetic linkage analysis has identified regions of the genome that might harbour inherited variants that cause reading disability. In particular, loci on chromosomes 6 and 18 have shown strong and replicable effects on reading abilities. These genomic regions contain tens or hundreds of candidate genes, and studies aimed at the identification of the specific causal genetic variants are underway.
  • Frank, S. L., Koppen, M., Noordman, L. G. M., & Vonk, W. (2003). Modeling knowledge-based inferences in story comprehension. Cognitive Science, 27(6), 875-910. doi:10.1016/j.cogsci.2003.07.002.

    Abstract

    A computational model of inference during story comprehension is presented, in which story situations are represented distributively as points in a high-dimensional “situation-state space.” This state space organizes itself on the basis of a constructed microworld description. From the same description, causal/temporal world knowledge is extracted. The distributed representation of story situations is more flexible than Golden and Rumelhart’s [Discourse Proc 16 (1993) 203] localist representation. A story taking place in the microworld corresponds to a trajectory through situation-state space. During the inference process, world knowledge is applied to the story trajectory. This results in an adjusted trajectory, reflecting the inference of propositions that are likely to be the case. Although inferences do not result from a search for coherence, they do cause story coherence to increase. The results of simulations correspond to empirical data concerning inference, reading time, and depth of processing. An extension of the model for simulating story retention shows how coherence is preserved during retention without controlling the retention process. Simulation results correspond to empirical data concerning story recall and intrusion.
  • Fransson, P., Merboldt, K.-D., Petersson, K. M., Ingvar, M., & Frahm, J. (2002). On the effects of spatial filtering — A comparative fMRI study of episodic memory encoding at high and low resolution. NeuroImage, 16(4), 977-984. doi:10.1006/nimg.2002.1079.

    Abstract

    Theeffects of spatial filtering in functional magnetic resonance imaging were investigated by reevaluating the data of a previous study of episodic memory encoding at 2 × 2 × 4-mm3 resolution with use of a SPM99 analysis involving a Gaussian kernel of 8-mm full width at half maximum. In addition, a multisubject analysis of activated regions was performed by normalizing the functional images to an approximate Talairach brain atlas. In individual subjects, spatial filtering merged activations in anatomically separated brain regions. Moreover, small foci of activated pixels which originated from veins became blurred and hence indistinguishable from parenchymal responses. The multisubject analysis resulted in activation of the hippocampus proper, a finding which could not be confirmed by the activation maps obtained at high resolution. It is concluded that the validity of multisubject fMRI analyses can be considerably improved by first analyzing individual data sets at optimum resolution to assess the effects of spatial filtering and minimize the risk of signal contamination by macroscopically visible vessels.
  • Ghatan, P. H., Hsieh, J. C., Petersson, K. M., Stone-Elander, S., & Ingvar, M. (1998). Coexistence of attention-based facilitation and inhibition in the human cortex. NeuroImage, 7, 23-29.

    Abstract

    A key function of attention is to select an appropriate subset of available information by facilitation of attended processes and/or inhibition of irrelevant processing. Functional imaging studies, using positron emission tomography, have during different experimental tasks revealed decreased neuronal activity in areas that process input from unattended sensory modalities. It has been hypothesized that these decreases reflect a selective inhibitory modulation of nonrelevant cortical processing. In this study we addressed this question using a continuous arithmetical task with and without concomitant disturbing auditory input (task-irrelevant speech). During the arithmetical task, irrelevant speech did not affect task-performance but yielded decreased activity in the auditory and midcingulate cortices and increased activity in the left posterior parietal cortex. This pattern of modulation is consistent with a top down inhibitory modulation of a nonattended input to the auditory cortex and a coexisting, attention-based facilitation of taskrelevant processing in higher order cortices. These findings suggest that task-related decreases in cortical activity may be of functional importance in the understanding of both attentional mechanisms and taskrelated information processing.
  • Gisselgard, J., Petersson, K. M., Baddeley, A., & Ingvar, M. (2003). The irrelevant speech effect: A PET study. Neuropsychologia, 41, 1899-1911. doi:10.1016/S0028-3932(03)00122-2.

    Abstract

    Positron emission tomography (PET) was performed in normal volunteers during a serial recall task under the influence of irrelevant speech comprising both single item repetition and multi-item sequences. An interaction approach was used to identify brain areas specifically related to the irrelevant speech effect. We interpreted activations as compensatory recruitment of complementary working memory processing, and decreased activity in terms of suppression of task relevant areas invoked by the irrelevant speech. The interaction between the distractors and working memory revealed a significant effect in the left, and to a lesser extent in the right, superior temporal region, indicating that initial phonological processing was relatively suppressed. Additional areas of decreased activity were observed in an a priori defined cortical network related to verbalworking memory, incorporating the bilateral superior temporal and inferior/middle frontal corticesn extending into Broca’s area on the left. We also observed a weak activation in the left inferior parietal cortex, a region suggested to reflect the phonological store, the subcomponent where the interference is assumed to take place. The results suggest that the irrelevant speech effect is correlated with and thus tentatively may be explained in terms of a suppression of components of the verbal working memory network as outlined. The results can be interpreted in terms of inhibitory top–down attentional mechanisms attenuating the influence of the irrelevant speech, although additional studies are clearly necessary to more fully characterize the nature of this phenomenon and its theoretical implications for existing short-term memory models
  • Le Guen, O. (2003). Quand les morts reviennent, réflexion sur l'ancestralité chez les Mayas des Basses Terres. Journal de la Société des Américanistes, 89(2), 171-205.

    Abstract

    When the dead come home… Remarks on ancestor worship among the Lowland Mayas. In Amerindian ethnographical literature, ancestor worship is often mentioned but evidence of its existence is lacking. This article will try to demonstrate that some Lowland Maya do worship ancestors ; it will use precise criteria taken from ethnological studies of societies where ancestor worship is common, compared to maya beliefs and practices. The All Souls’ Day, or hanal pixan, seems to be the most significant manifestation of this cult. Our approach will be comparative, through time – using colonial and ethnographical data of the twentieth century, and space – contemplating uses and beliefs of two maya groups, the Yucatec and the Lacandon Maya.
  • Hagoort, P. (1998). De electrofysiologie van taal: Wat hersenpotentialen vertellen over het menselijk taalvermogen. Neuropraxis, 2, 223-229.
  • Hagoort, P. (2002). De koninklijke verloving tussen psychologie en neurowetenschap. De Psycholoog, 37, 107-113.
  • Hagoort, P. (1998). De spreker als sprinter. Psychologie, 17, 48-49.
  • Hagoort, P. (2003). How the brain solves the binding problem for language: A neurocomputational model of syntactic processing. NeuroImage, 20(suppl. 1), S18-S29. doi:10.1016/j.neuroimage.2003.09.013.

    Abstract

    Syntax is one of the components in the architecture of language processing that allows the listener/reader to bind single-word information into a unified interpretation of multiword utterances. This paper discusses ERP effects that have been observed in relation to syntactic processing. The fact that these effects differ from the semantic N400 indicates that the brain honors the distinction between semantic and syntactic binding operations. Two models of syntactic processing attempt to account for syntax-related ERP effects. One type of model is serial, with a first phase that is purely syntactic in nature (syntax-first model). The other type of model is parallel and assumes that information immediately guides the interpretation process once it becomes available. This is referred to as the immediacy model. ERP evidence is presented in support of the latter model. Next, an explicit computational model is proposed to explain the ERP data. This Unification Model assumes that syntactic frames are stored in memory and retrieved on the basis of the spoken or written word form input. The syntactic frames associated with the individual lexical items are unified by a dynamic binding process into a structural representation that spans the whole utterance. On the basis of a meta-analysis of imaging studies on syntax, it is argued that the left posterior inferior frontal cortex is involved in binding syntactic frames together, whereas the left superior temporal cortex is involved in retrieval of the syntactic frames stored in memory. Lesion data that support the involvement of this left frontotemporal network in syntactic processing are discussed.
  • Hagoort, P. (2003). Interplay between syntax and semantics during sentence comprehension: ERP effects of combining syntactic and semantic violations. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 15(6), 883-899. doi:10.1162/089892903322370807.

    Abstract

    This study investigated the effects of combined semantic and syntactic violations in relation to the effects of single semantic and single syntactic violations on language-related event-related brain potential (ERP) effects (N400 and P600/ SPS). Syntactic violations consisted of a mismatch in grammatical gender or number features of the definite article and the noun in sentence-internal or sentence-final noun phrases (NPs). Semantic violations consisted of semantically implausible adjective–noun combinations in the same NPs. Combined syntactic and semantic violations were a summation of these two respective violation types. ERPs were recorded while subjects read the sentences with the different types of violations and the correct control sentences. ERP effects were computed relative to ERPs elicited by the sentence-internal or sentence-final nouns. The size of the N400 effect to the semantic violation was increased by an additional syntactic violation (the syntactic boost). In contrast, the size of the P600/ SPS to the syntactic violation was not affected by an additional semantic violation. This suggests that in the absence of syntactic ambiguity, the assignment of syntactic structure is independent of semantic context. However, semantic integration is influenced by syntactic processing. In the sentence-final position, additional global processing consequences were obtained as a result of earlier violations in the sentence. The resulting increase in the N400 amplitude to sentence-final words was independent of the nature of the violation. A speeded anomaly detection task revealed that it takes substantially longer to detect semantic than syntactic anomalies. These results are discussed in relation to the latency and processing characteristics of the N400 and P600/SPS effects. Overall, the results reveal an asymmetry in the interplay between syntax and semantics during on-line sentence comprehension.
  • Hagoort, P. (1998). Hersenen en taal in onderzoek en praktijk. Neuropraxis, 6, 204-205.
  • Hagoort, P., Wassenaar, M., & Brown, C. M. (2003). Syntax-related ERP-effects in Dutch. Cognitive Brain Research, 16(1), 38-50. doi:10.1016/S0926-6410(02)00208-2.

    Abstract

    In two studies subjects were required to read Dutch sentences that in some cases contained a syntactic violation, in other cases a semantic violation. All syntactic violations were word category violations. The design excluded differential contributions of expectancy to influence the syntactic violation effects. The syntactic violations elicited an Anterior Negativity between 300 and 500 ms. This negativity was bilateral and had a frontal distribution. Over posterior sites the same violations elicited a P600/SPS starting at about 600 ms. The semantic violations elicited an N400 effect. The topographic distribution of the AN was more frontal than the distribution of the classical N400 effect, indicating that the underlying generators of the AN and the N400 are, at least to a certain extent, non-overlapping. Experiment 2 partly replicated the design of Experiment 1, but with differences in rate of presentation and in the distribution of items over subjects, and without semantic violations. The word category violations resulted in the same effects as were observed in Experiment 1, showing that they were independent of some of the specific parameters of Experiment 1. The discussion presents a tentative account of the functional differences in the triggering conditions of the AN and the P600/SPS.
  • Hagoort, P., Wassenaar, M., & Brown, C. M. (2003). Real-time semantic compensation in patients with agrammatic comprehension: Electrophysiological evidence for multiple-route plasticity. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 100(7), 4340-4345. doi:10.1073/pnas.0230613100.

    Abstract

    To understand spoken language requires that the brain provides rapid access to different kinds of knowledge, including the sounds and meanings of words, and syntax. Syntax specifies constraints on combining words in a grammatically well formed manner. Agrammatic patients are deficient in their ability to use these constraints, due to a lesion in the perisylvian area of the languagedominant hemisphere. We report a study on real-time auditory sentence processing in agrammatic comprehenders, examining
    their ability to accommodate damage to the language system. We recorded event-related brain potentials (ERPs) in agrammatic comprehenders, nonagrammatic aphasics, and age-matched controls. When listening to sentences with grammatical violations, the agrammatic aphasics did not show the same syntax-related ERP effect as the two other subject groups. Instead, the waveforms of the agrammatic aphasics were dominated by a meaning-related ERP effect, presumably reflecting their attempts to achieve understanding by the use of semantic constraints. These data demonstrate that although agrammatic aphasics are impaired in their ability to exploit syntactic information in real time, they can reduce the consequences of a syntactic deficit by exploiting a semantic route. They thus provide evidence for the compensation of a syntactic deficit by a stronger reliance on another route in mapping
    sound onto meaning. This is a form of plasticity that we refer to as multiple-route plasticity.
  • Hagoort, P. (1989). Processing of lexical ambiguities: a comment on Milberg, Blumstein, and Dworetzky (1987). Brain and Language, 36, 335-348. doi:10.1016/0093-934X(89)90070-9.

    Abstract

    In a study by Milberg, Blumstein, and Dworetzky (1987), normal control subjects and Wernicke's and Broca's aphasics performed a lexical decision task on the third element of auditorily presented triplets of words with either a word or a nonword as target. In three of the four types of word triplets, the first and the third words were related to one or both meanings of the second word, which was semantically ambiguous. The fourth type of word triplet consisted of three unrelated, unambiguous words, functioning as baseline. Milberg et al. (1987) claim that the results for their control subjects are similar to those reported by Schvaneveldt, Meyer, and Becker's original study (1976) with the same prime types, and so interpret these as evidence for a selective lexical access of the different meanings of ambiguous words. It is argued here that Milberg et al. only partially replicate the Schvaneveldt et al. results. Moreover, the results of Milberg et al. are not fully in line with the selective access hypothesis adopted. Replication of the Milberg et al. (1987) study with Dutch materials, using both a design without and a design with repetition of the same target words for the same subjects led to the original pattern as reported by Schvaneveldt et al. (1976). In the design with four separate presentations of the same target word, a strong repetition effect was found. It is therefore argued that the discrepancy between the Milberg et al. results on the one hand, and the Schvaneveldt et al. results on the other, might be due to the absence of a control for repetition effects in the within-subject design used by Milberg et al. It is concluded that this makes the results for both normal and aphasic subjects in the latter study difficult to interpret in terms of a selective access model for normal processing.
  • Härle, M., Dobel, C., Cohen, R., & Rockstroh, B. (2002). Brain activity during syntactic and semantic processing - a magnetoencephalographic study. Brain Topography, 15(1), 3-11. doi:10.1023/A:1020070521429.

    Abstract

    Drawings of objects were presented in series of 54 each to 14 German speaking subjects with the tasks to indicate by button presses a) whether the grammatical gender of an object name was masculine ("der") or feminine ("die") and b) whether the depicted object was man-made or nature-made. The magnetoencephalogram (MEG) was recorded with a whole-head neuromagnetometer and task-specific patterns of brain activity were determined in the source space (Minimum Norm Estimates, MNE). A left-temporal focus of activity 150-275 ms after stimulus onset in the gender decision compared to the semantic classification task was discussed as indicating the retrieval of syntactic information, while a more expanded left hemispheric activity in the gender relative to the semantic task 300-625 ms after stimulus onset was discussed as indicating phonological encoding. A predominance of activity in the semantic task was observed over right fronto-central region 150-225 ms after stimulus-onset, suggesting that semantic and syntactic processes are prominent in this stage of lexical selection.
  • Haun, D. B. M. (2003). What's so special about spatial cognition. De Psychonoom, 18, 3-4.
  • Hayano, K. (2003). Self-presentation as a face-threatening act: A comparative study of self-oriented topic introduction in English and Japanese. Veritas, 24, 45-58.
  • Hoeks, J. C. J., Vonk, W., & Schriefers, H. (2002). Processing coordinated structures in context: The effect of topic-structure on ambiguity resolution. Journal of Memory and Language, 46(1), 99-119. doi:10.1006/jmla.2001.2800.

    Abstract

    When a sentence such as The model embraced the designer and the photographer laughed is read, the noun phrase the photographer is temporarily ambiguous: It can be either one of the objects of embraced (NP-coordination) or the subject of a new, conjoined sentence (S-coordination). It has been shown for a number of languages, including Dutch (the language used in this study), that readers prefer NP-coordination over S-coordination, at least in isolated sentences. In the present paper, it will be suggested that NP-coordination is preferred because it is the simpler of the two options in terms of topic-structure; in NP-coordinations there is only one topic, whereas S-coordinations contain two. Results from off-line (sentence completion) and online studies (a self-paced reading and an eye tracking experiment) support this topic-structure explanation. The processing difficulty associated with S-coordinated sentences disappeared when these sentences followed contexts favoring a two-topic continuation. This finding establishes topic-structure as an important factor in online sentence processing.
  • Holler, J., & Beattie, G. (2002). A micro-analytic investigation of how iconic gestures and speech represent core semantic features in talk. Semiotica, 142, 31-69.
  • Holler, J., & Beattie, G. (2003). How iconic gestures and speech interact in the representation of meaning: are both aspects really integral to the process? Semiotica, 146, 81-116.
  • Holler, J., & Beattie, G. (2003). Pragmatic aspects of representational gestures: Do speakers use them to clarify verbal ambiguity for the listener? Gesture, 3, 127-154.
  • Indefrey, P. (1998). De neurale architectuur van taal: Welke hersengebieden zijn betrokken bij het spreken. Neuropraxis, 2(6), 230-237.
  • Indefrey, P., Gruber, O., Brown, C. M., Hagoort, P., Posse, S., & Kleinschmidt, A. (1998). Lexicality and not syllable frequency determine lateralized premotor activation during the pronunciation of word-like stimuli: An fMRI study. NeuroImage, 7, S4.
  • Janse, E., Nooteboom, S. G., & Quené, H. (2003). Word-level intelligibility of time-compressed speech: Prosodic and segmental factors. Speech Communication, 41, 287-301. doi:10.1016/S0167-6393(02)00130-9.

    Abstract

    In this study we investigate whether speakers, in line with the predictions of the Hyper- and Hypospeech theory, speed up most during the least informative parts and less during the more informative parts, when they are asked to speak faster. We expected listeners to benefit from these changes in timing, and our main goal was to find out whether making the temporal organisation of artificially time-compressed speech more like that of natural fast speech would improve intelligibility over linear time compression. Our production study showed that speakers reduce unstressed syllables more than stressed syllables, thereby making the prosodic pattern more pronounced. We extrapolated fast speech timing to even faster rates because we expected that the more salient prosodic pattern could be exploited in difficult listening situations. However, at very fast speech rates, applying fast speech timing worsens intelligibility. We argue that the non-uniform way of speeding up may not be due to an underlying communicative principle, but may result from speakers’ inability to speed up otherwise. As both prosodic and segmental information contribute to word recognition, we conclude that extrapolating fast speech timing to extremely fast rates distorts this balance between prosodic and segmental information.

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