Integrating prosody in anticipatory language processing: how listeners adapt to unconventional prosodic cues

Chie Nakamura*, Jesse A. Harris, Sun Ah Jun

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A growing body of research suggests that language users integrate diverse sources of information in processing and adapt to the variability of language at multiple levels. In two visual-world paradigm studies, we explored whether listeners use prosody to predict a resolution to structures with a PP that is structurally ambiguous between a modifier and an instrument interpretation. The first study revealed that listeners predict a referent that is most compatible with the location of a prosodic boundary, casting anticipatory looks to the appropriate object even before the onset of a disambiguating word. The second study indicated that listeners failed to anticipate instrument resolutions when the prosody of non-experimental filler items was unconventional, even though experimental items remained identical to the first study. The results suggest that listeners adjust their predictive processing to the utility of prosodic information according to whether a speaker reliably conforms to the conventional use of prosody.

Original languageEnglish
JournalLanguage, Cognition and Neuroscience
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • anticipatory eye-movements
  • attachment ambiguity
  • prediction
  • Prosody
  • reliability

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Cognitive Neuroscience

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Integrating prosody in anticipatory language processing: how listeners adapt to unconventional prosodic cues'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this