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Tieu, Lyn; Lidz, Jeffrey – Language Acquisition: A Journal of Developmental Linguistics, 2016
This article presents a study of preschool-aged children's knowledge of the semantics of the negative polarity item (NPI) "any". NPIs like "any" differ in distribution from non-polarity-sensitive indefinites like "a": "Any" is restricted to downward-entailing linguistic environments (Fauconnier 1975, 1979;…
Descriptors: Semantics, Language Acquisition, Preschool Children, Comparative Analysis
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Gagliardi, Annie; Mease, Tara M.; Lidz, Jeffrey – Language Acquisition: A Journal of Developmental Linguistics, 2016
This article investigates infant comprehension of filler-gap dependencies. Three experiments probe 15- and 20-month-olds' comprehension of two filler-gap dependencies: "wh"-questions and relative clauses. Experiment 1 shows that both age groups appear to comprehend "wh"-questions. Experiment 2 shows that only the younger…
Descriptors: Infants, Language Acquisition, Phrase Structure, Language Processing
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Omaki, Akira; Lidz, Jeffrey – Language Acquisition: A Journal of Developmental Linguistics, 2015
Traditionally, acquisition of syntactic knowledge and the development of sentence comprehension behaviors have been treated as separate disciplines. This article reviews a growing body of work on the development of incremental sentence comprehension mechanisms and discusses how a better understanding of the developing parser can shed light on two…
Descriptors: Syntax, Language Acquisition, Language Research, Linguistic Input
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Viau, Joshua; Lidz, Jeffrey; Musolino, Julien – Language Acquisition: A Journal of Developmental Linguistics, 2010
Though preschoolers in certain experimental contexts strongly prefer to interpret ambiguous sentences containing quantified NPs and negation on the basis of surface syntax (e.g., Musolino's 1998 "observation of isomorphism"), contextual manipulations can lead to more adult-like behavior. But is isomorphism a "purely" pragmatic phenomenon, as…
Descriptors: Sentences, Semantics, Syntax, Language Processing
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Syrett, Kristen; Lidz, Jeffrey – Language Acquisition: A Journal of Developmental Linguistics, 2009
We show that 4-year-olds assign the correct interpretation to antecedent-contained deletion (ACD) sentences because they have the correct representation of these structures. This representation involves Quantifier Raising (QR) of a Quantificational Noun Phrase (QNP) that must move out of the site of the verb phrase in which it is contained to…
Descriptors: Sentences, Verbs, Nouns, Grammar
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Conroy, Anastasia; Lidz, Jeffrey; Musolino, Julien – Language Acquisition: A Journal of Developmental Linguistics, 2009
We demonstrate a U-shaped developmental trajectory in the interpretation of scopally ambiguous sentences, with 4-year-olds and adults, but not 5-year-olds, accessing inverse scope. These results argue against any view that treats 5-year-olds failures as resulting from immaturity of a single mechanism. Instead, we propose that this developmental…
Descriptors: Sentences, Figurative Language, Preschool Children, Adults