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LINGUIST List 20.837

Thu Mar 12 2009

Books: Psycholinguistics/Neurolinguistics/Semantics/Syntax: Koornneef

Editor for this issue: Fatemeh Abdollahi <fatemehlinguistlist.org>

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        1.    Parcival von Schmid, Eye-catching Anaphora: Koornneef

Message 1: Eye-catching Anaphora: Koornneef
Date: 07-Mar-2009
From: Parcival von Schmid <lotuu.nl>
Subject: Eye-catching Anaphora: Koornneef
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Title: Eye-catching Anaphora
Series Title: LOT Dissertation Series 190
Published: 2008
Publisher: Netherlands Graduate School of Linguistics / Landelijke - LOT

Author: Arnout Willem Koornneef
Paperback: ISBN: 9789078328643 Pages: 367 Price: Europe EURO 28.27

Anaphoric elements (e.g. reflexives such as himself, and pronouns such as
she and his) are among the most frequently encountered words in virtually
all human languages. The most important feature of these linguistic
elements is that they cannot be fully interpreted in isolation, but depend
on other elements in the utterance or text instead. Hence, an important
question for linguists and psycholinguists is how our language system
constructs anaphoric dependencies.

In this dissertation Arnout Koornneef discusses the findings of a series of
eyetracking and self-paced reading experiments, aimed at evaluating the
linguistic Primitives of Binding (POB) model (Reuland, 2001). This account
proposes that we should distinguish between syntactic anaphoric
dependencies (A-Chain formation between a reflexive and its antecedent),
semantic anaphoric dependencies (bound-variable pronouns) and discourse
anaphoric dependencies (coreferential pronouns). Furthermore, a general
economy principle governs the division of labor between the different
subcomponents of the anaphora resolution system: the syntactic process is
more economic than the semantic process and, similarly, the semantic
process is more economic than the discourse process. The results suggest
that this economy hierarchy has behavioral reality and, in addition, that
anaphora resolution occurs in a fixed sequential order, i.e. syntactic
anaphoric dependencies emerge before semantic anaphoric dependencies and,
in turn, semantic anaphoric dependencies emerge before discourse anaphoric
dependencies. At a more general level, the reported behavioral results
demonstrate the importance of incorporating linguistic theories into
(neuro)cognitive approaches to language comprehension, since linguistic
theories clearly define the object of interest (e.g. the nature of
anaphoric dependencies) and they furthermore generate important research
questions that would not have emerged otherwise.

The author combines insights from theoretical linguistics,
psycholinguistics and neurolinguistics and this dissertation should
therefore be of interest to scholars in any of these domains.

Linguistic Field(s): Discourse Analysis
                            Linguistic Theories

Written In: English (eng )

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