Cross-linguistic investigation of argument structure Lecture 4. Comparison between methods Elisabeth Verhoeven

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Lecture 4. Comparison between methods / Lundi 25 septembre – 16h à 18h – salle Vert, sous-sol bât. B

The methodologically interesting questions are: (a) whether the measures that we get with different empirical approaches (judgments, production) correlate and (b) how we estimate the mapping between different types of data. We will present evidence that the gradience in the intuition of agentivity of particular verbs correlates with the word order frequencies of these verbs (German and Greek). The mapping between different data types will be examined with models based on logistic regression.

Suggestions for Reading

Bresnan, J. 2007. Is syntactic knowledge probabilistic? Experiments with the English dative alternation. In S. Featherston & W. Sternefeld, eds., Roots: Linguistics in search of its evidential base. Mouton de Gruyter, Berlin: 75-96. (

Featherston, S. 2005. The Decathlon Model of empirical syntax. In S. Kepser & M. Reis, eds., Linguistic evidence: empirical, theoretical, and computational perspectives. De Gruyter, Berlin: 187-208. (

Verhoeven, E. & Temme, A. 2017. Word order acceptability and word order choice. Featherston et al. eds. Linguistic Evidence 2016 Online Proceedings. Tübingen: Universität Tübingen.

Verhoeven, E. 2017. Features or scales in word meaning? Verb classes as predictors of syntactic behaviour. Belgian Journal of Linguistics, Special Issue NWASV2.


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