Exploring Systematicity Between Phonological and Context-Cooccurrence Representations of the Mental Lexicon

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    Abstract

    This paper investigates the existence of systematicity between two similarity-based representations of the lexicon, one focusing on word-form and another one based on cooccurrence statistics in speech, which captures aspects of syntax and semantics. An analysis of the three most frequent form-homogeneous word groups in a Spanish speech corpus (cvcv, cvccv and cvcvcv words) supports the existence of systematicity: words that sound similar tend to occur in the same lexical contexts in speech. A lexicon that is highly systematic in this respect, however, may lead to confusion between similar-sounding words that appear in similar contexts. Exploring the impact of different phonological features on systematicity reveals that while some features (such as sharing consonants or the stress pattern) seem to underlie the measured systematicity, others (particularly, sharing the stressed vowel) oppose it, perhaps to help discriminate between words that systematicity may render ambiguous.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)259-278
    Number of pages20
    JournalMental Lexicon
    Volume3
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2008

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