This week’s Algonquian Reading Group will read Christianson & Ferreira’s (2005) Cognition article “Conceptual Accessibility and Sentence Production in a Free Word Order Language (Odawa)“. McGill visitor Kevin Russell (University of Manitoba) will lead discussion. If you are not a regular group attender, email Jessica for a copy of the paper.

The study reported here was conducted in the Algonquian language of Odawa (a.k.a. Ottawa), with the goal of gaining new insight into the ways that conceptual accessibility affects human sentence production. The linguistic characteristics of Odawa are quite different from those found in the languages most often examined by psycholinguists. The data obtained from the sentence
production experiment reported here are thus relevant to production in a heretofore unexamined language. Moreover, the data inform broader theoretical issues, such as the extent to which sentence production can be considered as an incremental process, and the interaction of the various factors affecting conceptual accessibility. In addition, the study stands as evidence that experimental psycholinguistic research can and should be carried out in typologically diverse languages.

As always, Algonquian Group meets Fridays at 1pm in room 117.