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The parser consults the lexicon in spite of transparent gender marking: EEG evidence from noun class agreement processing in Zulu
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Swedish Language and Multilingualism, Centre for Research on Bilingualism. Stellenbosch University, South Africa.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5203-9175
2022 (English)In: Cognition, ISSN 0010-0277, E-ISSN 1873-7838, Vol. 226, article id 105148Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In sentence comprehension, the parser in many languages has the option to use both the morphological form of a noun and its lexical representation when evaluating agreement. The additional step of consulting the lexicon incurs processing costs, and an important question is whether the parser takes that step even when the formal cues alone are sufficiently reliable to evaluate agreement. Our study addressed this question using electrophysiology in Zulu, a language where both grammatical gender and number features are reliably expressed formally by noun class prefixes, but only gender features are lexically specified. We observed reduced, more topographically focal LAN, and more frontally distributed alpha/beta power effects for gender compared to number agreement violations. These differences provide evidence that for gender mismatches, even though the formal cues are reliable, the parser nevertheless takes the additional step of consulting the noun's lexical representation, a step which is not available for number.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2022. Vol. 226, article id 105148
Keywords [en]
Zulu, Bantu, ERP, Time-frequency analysis, Sentence processing, Grammatical gender agreement
National Category
Languages and Literature
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-206168DOI: 10.1016/j.cognition.2022.105148ISI: 000911808600001PubMedID: 35533629Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85129732647OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-206168DiVA, id: diva2:1676053
Available from: 2022-06-23 Created: 2022-06-23 Last updated: 2023-02-15Bibliographically approved

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Bylund, Emanuel

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CiteExportLink to record
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  • nn-NB
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Output format
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