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CUNY Psycholinguistics Supper: Julie Franck (Université de Genève)

APR 08, 2014 | 6:30 PM TO 8:00 PM



The Graduate Center
365 Fifth Avenue




April 08, 2014: 6:30 PM-8:00 PM




The speakers will be Julie Franck (Université de Genève), whose talk has the title "Navigating interference effects in agreement: A tentative roadmap".

                   ALL WELCOME!

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ABSTRACT.  Empirical research on interference in agreement production supports the view that features spread through the hierarchical structure under the guidance of syntactic constraints like intervention and c-command.  In these studies, a plural feature mismatching with the agreement controller has a detrimental effect on agreement computation, causing an 'attraction' error.  In contrast, recent studies in sentence comprehension suggest that a mismatch in agreement features may actually show a facilitatory effect on parsing, in line with similarity-based interference effects reported in the memory literature as well as with recent developments of the Relativized Minimality framework. Unfortunately, the production/comprehension contrast fails to capture the whole picture, since both facilitatory and detrimental effects of feature mismatch are reported in the comprehension literature.  I will propose a tentative roadmap to this bushy set of empirical facts based on novel experimental evidence from our lab showing that (a) the direction of the interference effect in sentence comprehension depends on the task/structures used and the underlying process presumably measured, and (b) interference is structure-dependent, no matter its direction.

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Send questions and comments to Dianne Bradley,