ERIC Number: EJ851480
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Jan
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Plausibility and Verb Subcategorization in Temporarily Ambiguous Sentences: Evidence from Self-Paced Reading
Traxler, Matthew J.
Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, v34 n1 p1-30 Jan 2005
A self-paced reading experiment investigated processing of sentences containing a noun-phrase that could temporarily be mistaken as the direct-object argument of a verb in a subordinate clause but actually constituted the syntactic subject of the main clause (often referred to as an "early" vs. "late closure" ambiguity). Subcategorization preference of the subordinate verb and plausibility of the syntactic misanalysis were manipulated. Elevated reading times occurred during processing of the temporarily ambiguous noun-phrase for those sentences where the noun-phrase was an implausible direct-object of the preceding verb, regardless of the verbs' subcategorization preferences. Elevated reading times were observed for all sentence types following syntactic disambiguation. Subsequent correlational analyses showed that the verbs' individual subcategorization preferences affected processing time on the critical noun-phrase and the syntactically disambiguating main verb.
Descriptors: Sentences, Verbs, Nouns, Figurative Language, Language Processing, Phrase Structure, Classification, Syntax, Reading Processes, Correlation, Psycholinguistics
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
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