Does sentence structure boost early word learning? An artifical language learning study

Eva Bemd, van den, M.B.J. Mos, A. Alishahi, Shakila Shayan

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Abstract

This paper examines the semantic consequences of the presence and absence of the verbal particle in Hungarian sentences containing a verb of creation. Since these verbs are Definiteness-Effect verbs, the aspectual interpretation does not depend merely on the verbal particle’s position – or even presence – in the sentence, as in other cases, but rather on the specific/non-specific interpretation of the object. The main claim of the paper is that the verbal particle’s role in such sentences can be defined in terms of collectivity and distributivity: the Definiteness-Effect constructions – the ones without verbal particle – can only refer to collective events, and the non-Definiteness-Effect-constructions – the ones containing a verbal particle – can refer to both collective and distributive events.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)103-119
Number of pages16
JournalWiener Linguistische Gazette
Volume78
Issue numberA
Publication statusPublished - 2014

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