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Part I - Psycholinguistics for lexical semantics

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  29 September 2009

Patrick Saint-Dizier
Affiliation:
Institut de Recherche en Informatique, Toulouse
Evelyn Viegas
Affiliation:
Brandeis University, Massachusetts
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Summary

The first topic, psycholinguistic and cognitive aspects of lexical semantics, is addressed in the first two chapters. This area is particularly active but relatively ignored in computational circles. The reasons might be a lack of precise methods and formalisms. This area is, however, crucial for the construction of well-designed semantic lexicons by the empirical psychologically based analysis introduced in the domain of computational lexical semantics.

“Polysemy and related phenomena from a cognitive linguistic viewpoint” by Alan Cruse surveys the ways in which the contribution of the same grammatical word makes to the meaning of a larger unit depending on the context. Two main explanatory hypotheses that account for contextual variation are explored: lexical semantics and pragmatics. Alternatives to this approach are studied in the other parts of the volume.

The second chapter, “Mental lexicon and machine lexicon: Which properties are shared by machine and mental word representations? Which are not?” by J.-F. Le Ny, sets language comprehension and interpretation within a general cognitive science perspective. Properties common to natural and artificial semantic units (e.g., denotation, super-ordination, case roles, etc.) are first explored. Then, problems related to activability and accessibility in the memory are addressed in both a theoretical and experimental way.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 1995

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