1. The processing of syntactic dependencies (with Jenny Doetjes and Leticia Pablos)
We investigate the active search mechanism outside of typical wh-filler dependencies. In particular, we investigate the processing of cataphoric pronouns, and the processing of negative polarity items. Our results show that in both cases, the active search mechanism is activated as soon as the dependent element is encountered.
2. Understanding questions
In English, an interrogative phrase (or wh-phrase) has to be fronted in order to form a question (What did he ask?). In other languages, the wh-phrase remains ‘in situ’, that is, in its original position (cf. French Il a demandé quoi? lit. ‘He asked what?’, meaning ‘What did he ask?’). Non-fronted questions have been addressed in the literature from various angles, but no consensus has been reached on their status, nor on the question why in some languages non-fronting is optional while in others it is the only possibility. This project aims at answering these questions.
Leiden Institute for Brain and Cognition (LIBC) read more >>