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Silent syntax? Experimental investigations of ellipsis


Silent syntax? Experimental investigations of ellipsis

The central question for ellipsis resolution is how the phonologically silent material at the ellipsis site is recovered from the antecedent. The answer to this question bears upon some fundamental issues of linguistic inquiry, including whether postulating “silent” syntactic representations is necessary, and what is the division of labor between syntactic and discourse constraints. Against the background of an extensive theoretical discussion on ellipsis, this course examines the existing experimental findings on ellipsis processing. We will primarily focus on three questions. First, what constitutes good experimental evidence that ellipsis resolution is (or is not) sensitive to the structural properties of the antecedent? Second, what is the retrieval mechanism that the parser adopts to access and retrieve the antecedent? Third, what role does discourse information play in ellipsis resolution and what is the division of labor between syntax and discourse processing? 

Course Status: Open

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Second two-week Session


3:10 pm-5:00 pm
3:10 pm-5:00 pm



Basic familiarity with syntax, semantics, and how psycholinguistic research is conducted.