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Title: English word formation : morphological constraints and their time-course during processing
Author: Cunnings, Ian
ISNI:       0000 0001 3400 4956
Awarding Body: University of Essex
Current Institution: The University of Essex pre-October 2008
Date of Award: 2008
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The plurals-inside-compounds effect has been one of the most widely studied morphological phenomena in the psycholinguistics literature. Research has shown that there is both a restriction against regular but not irregular plurals inside compounds (*rats eater versus mice eater), and a general preference for non-heads to be singular (?mice eater versus mouse eater). The general preference for singular non-heads has been derived from a semantic constraint against non-heads marked for plural number semantics (Haskell, MacDonald & Seidenberg 2003),whereas the avoidance of regular plurals results from a morphological constraint against concatenative regular plural inflections (Gordon 1985, Kiparsky 1982, Pinker 1999). However, a restricted range of exceptions to the morphological constraint (buildings inspector) are in fact possible, but only when licensed by particular semantic properties (Alegre & Gordon 1999). Whether these constraints also apply to word formation by derivational suffixation is not known (*ratsless versus ?miceless versus ~ouseless), and the time-course of these constraints during online processing has not previously been examined.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available