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Article: Effects of weight and syntactic priming on the production of Cantonese verb-doubling

TitleEffects of weight and syntactic priming on the production of Cantonese verb-doubling
Authors
KeywordsChinese
Grammatical weight
Sentence production
Syntactic priming
Verb-doubling
Issue Date2011
PublisherSpringer New York LLC. The Journal's web site is located at http://springerlink.metapress.com/openurl.asp?genre=journal&issn=0090-6905
Citation
Journal Of Psycholinguistic Research, 2011, v. 40 n. 1, p. 1-28 How to Cite?
AbstractVerb-doubling, where a copy of the main verb occurs both before and after the direct object, is a structure commonly used in Chinese in sentences containing a frequency or duration phrase. In Cantonese, verb-doubling is highly optional and therefore problematic for existing syntactic, semantic, and pragmatic accounts of its distribution in Mandarin. The current study investigates the role of grammatical weight and syntactic priming in the choice of verb-doubling in Cantonese. Following (Hawkins in Efficiency and complexity in grammars, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2004) theory of efficiency and complexity in grammars, we hypothesized that speakers would choose verb-doubling over the canonical structure more often when the object NP was heavy, in order to minimize processing domains. In addition, we expected an effect of syntactic priming whereby the choice of structure is influenced by a previously encountered structure. The results of two elicited production experiments revealed no weight-based preference for verb-doubling, and only minor effects of grammatical weight, but clear effects of syntactic priming: (1) for both canonical primes and verb-doubling primes, speakers tended to repeat previously heard structures; (2) the priming effect was just as strong in the heavy NP condition, where speakers made more errors recalling the semantic content of the sentence, suggesting that semantic information is represented separately from syntactic information; (3) the priming effect was stronger for informationally accurate responses, suggesting that recently activated structures are easier to produce than other structures under conditions of increased cognitive load. We conclude that the choice between verb-doubling and canonical structure in Cantonese is easily influenced by the structure of recently encountered sentences, with weight effects, if any, being more difficult to detect. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/133419
ISSN
2015 Impact Factor: 0.722
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 0.380
ISI Accession Number ID
References

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorFrancis, EJen_HK
dc.contributor.authorMatthews, Sen_HK
dc.contributor.authorWong, RWYen_HK
dc.contributor.authorKwan, SWMen_HK
dc.date.accessioned2011-05-11T08:36:07Z-
dc.date.available2011-05-11T08:36:07Z-
dc.date.issued2011en_HK
dc.identifier.citationJournal Of Psycholinguistic Research, 2011, v. 40 n. 1, p. 1-28en_HK
dc.identifier.issn0090-6905en_HK
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/133419-
dc.description.abstractVerb-doubling, where a copy of the main verb occurs both before and after the direct object, is a structure commonly used in Chinese in sentences containing a frequency or duration phrase. In Cantonese, verb-doubling is highly optional and therefore problematic for existing syntactic, semantic, and pragmatic accounts of its distribution in Mandarin. The current study investigates the role of grammatical weight and syntactic priming in the choice of verb-doubling in Cantonese. Following (Hawkins in Efficiency and complexity in grammars, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2004) theory of efficiency and complexity in grammars, we hypothesized that speakers would choose verb-doubling over the canonical structure more often when the object NP was heavy, in order to minimize processing domains. In addition, we expected an effect of syntactic priming whereby the choice of structure is influenced by a previously encountered structure. The results of two elicited production experiments revealed no weight-based preference for verb-doubling, and only minor effects of grammatical weight, but clear effects of syntactic priming: (1) for both canonical primes and verb-doubling primes, speakers tended to repeat previously heard structures; (2) the priming effect was just as strong in the heavy NP condition, where speakers made more errors recalling the semantic content of the sentence, suggesting that semantic information is represented separately from syntactic information; (3) the priming effect was stronger for informationally accurate responses, suggesting that recently activated structures are easier to produce than other structures under conditions of increased cognitive load. We conclude that the choice between verb-doubling and canonical structure in Cantonese is easily influenced by the structure of recently encountered sentences, with weight effects, if any, being more difficult to detect. © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC.en_HK
dc.languageengen_US
dc.publisherSpringer New York LLC. The Journal's web site is located at http://springerlink.metapress.com/openurl.asp?genre=journal&issn=0090-6905en_HK
dc.relation.ispartofJournal of Psycholinguistic Researchen_HK
dc.rightsThe original publication is available at www.springerlink.com-
dc.subjectChineseen_HK
dc.subjectGrammatical weighten_HK
dc.subjectSentence productionen_HK
dc.subjectSyntactic primingen_HK
dc.subjectVerb-doublingen_HK
dc.titleEffects of weight and syntactic priming on the production of Cantonese verb-doublingen_HK
dc.typeArticleen_HK
dc.identifier.openurlhttp://library.hku.hk:4550/resserv?sid=HKU:IR&issn=0090-6905&volume=40&issue=1&spage=1&epage=28&date=2011&atitle=Effects++of+weight+and+syntactic+priming+on+the+production+of+Cantonese+verb-doubling-
dc.identifier.emailMatthews, S: matthews@hkucc.hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.authorityMatthews, S=rp01207en_HK
dc.description.naturelink_to_subscribed_fulltext-
dc.identifier.doi10.1007/s10936-010-9152-0en_HK
dc.identifier.pmid20526678-
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-79951550020en_HK
dc.identifier.hkuros185023en_US
dc.relation.referenceshttp://www.scopus.com/mlt/select.url?eid=2-s2.0-79951550020&selection=ref&src=s&origin=recordpageen_HK
dc.identifier.volume40en_HK
dc.identifier.issue1en_HK
dc.identifier.spage1en_HK
dc.identifier.epage28en_HK
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000287359700001-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Statesen_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridFrancis, EJ=8908437800en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridMatthews, S=9278061600en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridWong, RWY=40361584900en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridKwan, SWM=35215769700en_HK
dc.identifier.citeulike7378484-

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