Browsing by Subject "LANGUAGE"

Sort by: Order: Results:

Now showing items 1-20 of 47
  • Nikolaev, Alexandre; Lehtonen, Minna; Higby, Eve; Hyun, JungMoon; Ashaie, Sameer (2018)
    The aim of the present study was to investigate whether the recognition speed of Finnish nominal base forms varies as a function of their paradigmatic complexity (stem allomorphy) or productivity status. Nikolaev et al. (2014) showed that words with greater stem allomorphy from an unproductive inflectional class arc recognized faster than words with lower stein allomorphy from a productive inflectional class. Productivity of an inflectional paradigm correlates with the number of stem allomorphs in languages like Finnish in that unproductive inflectional classes tend to have higher stem allomorphy. We wanted to distinguish which of these two characteristics provides the benefit to speed of recognition found by Nikolaev et al. (2014). The current study involved a lexical decision task comparing three categories of words: unproductive with three or more stem allomorphs, unproductive with two stem allomorphs, and productive with two stein allomorphs. We observed a facilitation effect for word recognition only for unproductive words with three or more stem allomorphs, but not for unproductive words with two allomorphs. This effect was observed particularly in words of low to moderate familiarity. The findings suggest that high stem allomorphy, rather than productivity of the inflectional class, is driving the facilitation effect in word recognition.
  • Virtanen, Pirjo Kristiina; Apurina, Francisco; Facundes, Sidney (2021)
    This article looks at what origin stories teach about the world and what kind of material presence they have in Southwestern Amazonia. We examine the ways the Apurina relate to certain nonhuman entities through their origin story, and our theoretical approach is language materiality, as we are interested in material means of mediating traditional stories. Analogous to the ways that speakers of many other languages who distinguish the entities that they talk to or about, the Apurina make use of linguistic resources to establish the ways they interact with different entities. Besides these resources, the material means of mediating stories is a crucial tool to narrate the worlds of humans and nonhumans. Storytelling requires material mediation, and a specific context of plant substances. It also involves community meeting as a space of trust in order to become a communicative practice and effectively introduce the history of the people. Our sources are ethnography, language documentation, and autoethnography.
  • Siragusa, Laura; Zhukova, Ol'ga Yu (2021)
    This article undermines the actuality of a strict boundary between language and materiality by presenting verbal charms (puheged, vajhed/pakitas in Vepsian) among Veps, an Indigenous minority group of Northwest Russia. Vepsian verbal charms are ritualizedways of speaking that are customarily used to prompt a change in both human beings and environments in very tangibleways. When observing how they are conceived, distributed, and performed among Veps, the rigid separation between "material" and "immaterial" realms begins to be felt as an artificial construction, since Veps understand that in the act of "blowing" air accompanied by the recitation of "specificwords," human and often non-human agencies join forces to promote changes in people and the environment. This paper engages not onlywith the academic interest in the material intersections between language and the world (see, Cavanaugh and Shankar 2017; Keane 2008a; Wiener 2013, to name a few), but also aims to reframe the notion of "event" as a transformative and suspended encounter between human and often non-human agencies (Kapferer 2015) and thus deepen our understanding of what living relationally might entail.
  • Parviainen, Tiina; Helenius, Päivi; Salmelin, Riitta (2019)
    Auditory cortex in each hemisphere shows preference to sounds from the opposite hemifield in the auditory space. Besides this contralateral dominance, the auditory cortex shows functional and structural lateralization, presumably influencing the features of subsequent auditory processing. Children have been shown to differ from adults in the hemispheric balance of activation in higher-order auditory based tasks. We studied, first, whether the contralateral dominance can be detected in 7- to 8-year-old children and, second, whether the response properties of auditory cortex in children differ between hemispheres. Magnetoencephalography (MEG) responses to simple tones revealed adult-like contralateral preference that was, however, extended in time in children. Moreover, we found stronger emphasis towards mature response properties in the right than left hemisphere, pointing to faster maturation of the right-hemisphere auditory cortex. The activation strength of the child-typical prolonged response was significantly decreased with age, within the narrow age-range of the studied child population. Our results demonstrate that although the spatial sensitivity to the opposite hemifield has emerged by 7 years of age, the population-level neurophysiological response shows salient immature features, manifested particularly in the left hemisphere. The observed functional differences between hemispheres may influence higher-level processing stages, for example, in language function.
  • Tiainen, Mikko; Lukavsky, Jiri; Tiippana, Kaisa; Vainio, Martti; Šimko, Juraj; Felisberti, Fatima; Vainio, Lari (2017)
    We have recently shown in Finnish speakers that articulation of certain vowels and consonants has a systematic influence on simultaneous grasp actions as well as on forward and backward hand movements. Here we studied whether these effects generalize to another language, namely Czech. We reasoned that if the results generalized to another language environment, it would suggest that the effects arise through other processes than language-dependent semantic associations. Rather, the effects would be likely to arise through language-independent interactions between processes that plan articulatory gestures and hand movements. Participants were presented with visual stimuli specifying articulations to be uttered (e.g., A or I), and they were required to produce a manual response concurrently with the articulation. In Experiment 1 they responded with a precision or a power grip, whereas in Experiment 2 they responded with a forward or a backward hand movement. The grip congruency effect was fully replicated: the consonant [k] and the vowel [alpha] were associated with power grip responses, while the consonant [t] and the vowel [i] were associated with precision grip responses. The forward/backward congruency effect was replicated with vowels [alpha], [o], which were associated with backward movement and with [ i], which was associated with forward movement, but not with consonants [k] and [ t]. These findings suggest that the congruency effects mostly reflect interaction between processes that plan articulatory gestures and hand movements with an exception that the forward/backward congruency effect might only work with vowel articulation.
  • De Tiege, Xavier; Lundqvist, Daniel; Beniczky, Sandor; Seri, Stefano; Paetau, Ritva (2017)
    Purpose: This comprehensive survey aims at characterizing the current clinical use of magnetoencephalography (MEG) across European MEG centres. Methods: Forty-four MEG centres across Europe were contacted in May 2015 via personalized e-mail to contribute to survey. The web-based survey was available on-line for 1 month and the MEG centres that did not respond were further contacted to maximize participation. Results: Among the 57% of responders, 12 centres from 10 different countries reported to use MEG for clinical applications. A total of 524 MEG investigations were performed in 2014 for the pre-surgical evaluation of epilepsy, while in the same period 244 MEG investigations were performed for pre-surgical functional brain mapping. Seven MEG centres located in different European countries performed >50 MEG investigations for epilepsy mapping in 2014, both in children and adults. In those centres, time from patient preparation to MEG data reporting tends to be lower than those investigating a lower annual number of patients. Conclusion: This survey demonstrates that there is in Europe an increasing and widespread expertise in the field of clinical MEG. These findings should serve as a basis to harmonize clinical MEG procedures and promote the clinical added value of MEG across Europe. MEG should now be considered in Europe as a mature clinical neurophysiological technique that should be used routinely in two specific clinical indications, i.e, the pre-surgical evaluation of refractory focal epilepsy and functional brain mapping. (C) 2017 British Epilepsy Association. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
  • Reile, Maria; Plado, Helen; Gudde, Harmen B.; Coventry, Kenny R. (2020)
    There is debate regarding the extent to which egocentric distance versus a more interactional approach underpin the use of spatial demonstratives across languages. This study experimentally tested the influence of object distance from a speaker and two dynamic speech-situation related parameters position of an interlocutor, and the one who placed the object referred to - on adnominal demonstrative pronoun choice in two very close kindred languages: Estonian and Voro. These languages are spoken in the same geographical region and are closely related yet have different demonstrative systems. Our results confirmed the influence of egocentric distance on the choice of adnominal demonstrative pronouns in both languages, but the influence of two more interactional factors was found only in Voro. These results highlight the importance of egocentric distance underlying the use of demonstratives in a spatial context but also show that languages that are even closely related vary in the extent to which additional parameters affect dedmonstrative choice.
  • Liu, Xuanyao; Kanduri, Chakravarthi; Oikkonen, Jaana; Karma, Kai; Raijas, Pirre; Ukkola-Vuoti, Liisa; Teo, Yik-Ying; Jarvela, Irma (2016)
    Abilities related to musical aptitude appear to have a long history in human evolution. To elucidate the molecular and evolutionary background of musical aptitude, we compared genome-wide genotyping data (641 K SNPs) of 148 Finnish individuals characterized for musical aptitude. We assigned signatures of positive selection in a case-control setting using three selection methods: haploPS, XP-EHH and F-ST. Gene ontology classification revealed that the positive selection regions contained genes affecting inner-ear development. Additionally, literature survey has shown that several of the identified genes were known to be involved in auditory perception (e.g. GPR98, USH2A), cognition and memory (e.g. GRIN2B, IL1A, IL1B, RAPGEF5), reward mechanisms (RGS9), and song perception and production of songbirds (e.g. FOXP1, RGS9, GPR98, GRIN2B). Interestingly, genes related to inner-ear development and cognition were also detected in a previous genome-wide association study of musical aptitude. However, the candidate genes detected in this study were not reported earlier in studies of musical abilities. Identification of genes related to language development (FOXP1 and VLDLR) support the popular hypothesis that music and language share a common genetic and evolutionary background. The findings are consistent with the evolutionary conservation of genes related to auditory processes in other species and provide first empirical evidence for signatures of positive selection for abilities that contribute to musical aptitude.
  • Aitamurto, Kaarina (2019)
    Transnational Islam is increasingly presented in the Russian political rhetoric as a security threat. Therefore, Russian politicians and authorities attempt to support indigenous or national forms of Islam. Similar policies are implemented in several western European countries. Yet they tend to disregard the heterogeneity of the Muslim community, they create exclusions and they are often conceived as imposing outside evaluations and interpretations on Islam. This contribution analyses initiatives intended to develop a national Islam in post-Soviet Russia. While the aims, methods and problems in different countries are often quite similar, the values and norms underlying these initiatives vary and reflect the societies from which they emerge. This contribution argues that since the 1990s, the changes in the political line of the Kremlin have impacted the project for a ‘national’ Islam by placing less emphasis on liberal values and more emphasis on adherence to loyalism and political conservatism.
  • Peltokorpi, Sini; Daelman, Marlene; Salo, Saara; Laakso, Minna (2020)
    Interaction between parents and children with congenital deafblindness (CDB) is easily hampered due to dual sensory loss. This case report examines imitation and emotional availability in interaction between a mother and her 3-year-old child with CDB first in unguided play and then in three play sessions with tactile imitation guidance. The video recorded play sessions were analyzed for frequency, length, and modality of imitation. Emotional Availability Scales were used to code the emotional quality of interaction. The results showed that before the guidance the mother imitated the child mainly vocally. After the guidance, the use of tactility in imitations increased. Imitation exchanges lasted longest in the last session. The emotional availability between the mother and the child was higher after the guidance. Further research is needed to confirm the positive outcomes of this case study.
  • Simon, Júlia; Balla, Viktoria Roxana (2020)
    The study investigated auditory temporal processing on a tens of milliseconds scale that is the interval when two consecutive stimuli are processed either together or as distinct events. Distinctiveness is defined by one's ability to make correct order judgments of the presented sounds and is measured via the spatial temporal order judgement task (TOJ). The study aimed to identify electrophysiological indices of the TOJ performance. Tone pairs were presented with inter-stimulus intervals (ISI) varying between 25 and 75 ms while EEG was recorded. A pronounced amplitude change in the P2 interval was found between the event-related potential (ERP) of tone pairs having ISI = 55 and 65 ms, but it was a characteristic only of the group having poor behavioral thresholds. With the two groups combined, the amplitude change between these ERPs in the P2 interval showed a medium-size correlation with the behavioral threshold.
  • Mononen, Kaarina (2019)
    This article analyses how caregivers use affective touch as a resource to facilitate interaction. Through touch, caregivers construct positive socio-emotional relationships with their residents. The analysis of micro-level interaction is based on an interactional sociolinguistic framework, and reveals how caregivers display affection and intimacy while assisting the residents in everyday situations in a care home. All of the examples involve touching a person's shoulder, stroking or giving half-embraces, typical resources used to construct affiliation between caregivers and residents. This article illustrates how affective touch facilitates interaction by regulating participation and calming down residents, by mitigating the controlling aspect of caring, and by fostering a positive interpersonal relationship. The care situations presented in this article contain crucial pauses within talk that are used to construct a peaceful atmosphere. During these crucial moments, embodied action effectively indicates an orientation to listening and establishes a presence to accomplish the actions in that situational talk. This analysis contributes to the studies on embodied interaction and on interpersonal relationships in care for older adults.(1)
  • Fernandez-Llamazares, Alvaro; Lepofsky, Dana (2019)
    Music is recognized as an essential constituent of the diversity of life on Earth and is enshrined in the concept of biocultural diversity. While research shows that song is an untapped library of biocultural memory, ethnobiologists have not yet explored the many areas in which studying songs and music through an ethnobiological lens could bring into focus the multi-dimensional relationships among humans and their biological worlds. 'the research articles in this special issue illustrate the importance of songs as both a repository of ethnobiological knowledge and as a means to construct, maintain, and mobilize peoples' intimate relations with their local ecologies. Although many traditional music-making systems are under risk of attrition, the extent to which traditional songs continue to be performed and celebrated in many Indigenous and local communities attests not just to the endurance and resilience of their cultures, but also to their deep cultural attachment to their lands as manifested through song. this special issue constitutes one significant step towards the recognition of music both as a timeless prism for looking at human-nature inter-relations, in all their complexities and magnificence, and as an essential form of biocultural heritage, worthy of documentation, conservation, and revitalization.
  • Lulle, Aija; Bankovska, Agnese (2019)
    In this article we investigate what happens to the children who are brought to a new country along with their parents, and how they, now young adults, narrate the 'self' as a migrant child and adolescent in different temporal and spatial contexts. We draw on five long narrative interviews with young women who were born in Latvia and came to Finland during their childhood. For our analysis of these narratives, we coin a notion of 'fateful well-being'. The research participants' challenges as child migrants, where geographical displacement was compounded by language changes and discontinuities in schooling, as well as ruptures with family members and friends, are revalued and appropriated through the self-development skills of reflexive narration. Within the concept of fateful well-being, youth transitions involve both constrained agency and choices towards well-being. We argue that reconciling difficulties is a vital part of fateful wellbeing.
  • Kazemi, Ali (2020)
    This study examines the sequential and situated organization associated with framing locational formulations by dislocated parties to mobile phone calls for the joint accomplishment of location-related social action. The data come from 22 mundane Farsi mobile phone calls involving location inquiring and/or reporting. The analysis of the data, informed by conversational analysis and Levinson's conceptual framework of perspective-taking, adds frame of reference (hereafter, FoR) to Schegloff's location, membership, and topic or activity analyses operative in the selection of locational formulations. The trajectory plotted for location-related action indicates the contingent roles which material, linguistic and semiotic resources play in the selection of locational formulations deployed for co-presence purposes. The findings suggest consequentiality of the-relevant-next action for the framing of locational descriptions and provide insight into how conversationalists interact with their physical environment in a wider social context.
  • Södervik, Ilona; Nousiainen, Maija; Koponen, Ismo (2021)
    The purpose of this study is to increase the understanding about undergraduate life science students’ conceptions concerning the role of photosynthesizing plants in the ecosystem, utilizing a network analysis method. Science learning requires the integration and linking of abstract and often counterintuitive concepts successfully into multifaceted networks. The quality of these networks, together with their abilities to communicate via the language of science, influences students’ success in academic, verbal problem-solving tasks. This study contributes to investigating students’ understanding, utilizing a modern network analysis method in exploring first-year university life science students’ written answers. In this study, a total of 150 first-year life science students answered two open-ended tasks related to the role of photosynthesizing plants in the ecosystem. A network analysis tool was used in exploring the occurrence of different-level science concepts and the interrelatedness between these concepts in students’ verbal outputs. The results showed that the richness of concept networks and students’ use of macro-concepts were remarkably varied between the tasks. Higher communicability measures were connected to the more abundant existence of macro-concepts in the task concerning the role of plants from the food-chain perspective. In the answers for the task concerning the role of plants regarding the atmosphere, the students operated mainly with single facts, and there were only minor interconnections made between the central concepts. On the basis of these results, the need for more all-encompassing biology teaching concerning complex environmental and socio-economic problems became evident. Thus, methodological and pedagogical contributions are discussed.
  • Partanen, Eino J.; Leminen, Alina; Cook, Clare; Shtyrov, Yury (2018)
    To master linguistic communication, humans must acquire large vocabularies quickly and effortlessly. Efficient word learning might be facilitated by the ability to rapidly acquire novel word forms even outside the focus of attention, occurring within minutes of repetitive exposure and suggesting fast and automatic lexicon acquisition. However, this phenomenon has been studied in the auditory modality only, and it is unknown whether similar mechanisms also exist in the visual domain. We tested this by presenting participants with novel written word forms while the focus of their attention was on a non-linguistic dual colour-detection task. Matched familiar word forms served as a control. Using magnetoencephalography (MEG), we scrutinised changes in neuromagnetic responses to familiar and to novel word forms over approximately 15 minutes of exposure. We found, for the first time, a visual analogue of automatic rapid build-up of neural memory circuits for unattended novel lexical items, seen as a rapid enhancement of early (similar to 100 ms post-onset) activation in the left anterior-superior temporal lobe. Our results suggest that the brain quickly forms cortical representations for new written forms, and indicate that the automatic neural mechanisms subserving rapid online acquisition of novel linguistic information might be shared by both auditory and visual modalities.
  • Tissari, Heli; Vanhatalo, Ulla; Siiroinen, Mari (2019)
    NSM researchers have not used corpus data very systematically thus far. One could talk about corpus-assisted rather than corpus-based or corpus-driven research. This article suggests a way to not only base research on corpus data, but also to let it guide us in defining words in terms of NSM. It presents a new method, which we have developed. Our data come from the Suomi24 Sentences Corpus and concerns the Finnish emotion words viha ('anger, hate'), vihata ('to hate') and vihainen ('angry').
  • Gialluisi, Alessandro; Andlauer, Till F. M.; Mirza-Schreiber, Nazanin; Moll, Kristina; Becker, Jessica; Hoffmann, Per; Ludwig, Kerstin U.; Czamara, Darina; St Pourcain, Beate; Brandler, William; Honbolygo, Ferenc; Toth, Denes; Csepe, Valeria; Huguet, Guillaume; Morris, Andrew P.; Hulslander, Jacqueline; Willcutt, Erik G.; DeFries, John C.; Olson, Richard K.; Smith, Shelley D.; Pennington, Bruce F.; Vaessen, Anniek; Maurer, Urs; Lyytinen, Heikki; Peyrard-Janvid, Myriam; Leppanen, Paavo H. T.; Brandeis, Daniel; Bonte, Milene; Stein, John F.; Talcott, Joel B.; Fauchereau, Fabien; Wilcke, Arndt; Francks, Clyde; Bourgeron, Thomas; Monaco, Anthony P.; Ramus, Franck; Landerl, Karin; Kere, Juha; Scerri, Thomas S.; Paracchini, Silvia; Fisher, Simon E.; Schumacher, Johannes; Noethen, Markus M.; Mueller-Myhsok, Bertram; Schulte-Koerne, Gerd (2019)
    Developmental dyslexia (DD) is one of the most prevalent learning disorders, with high impact on school and psychosocial development and high comorbidity with conditions like attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), depression, and anxiety. DD is characterized by deficits in different cognitive skills, including word reading, spelling, rapid naming, and phonology. To investigate the genetic basis of DD, we conducted a genome-wide association study (GWAS) of these skills within one of the largest studies available, including nine cohorts of reading-impaired and typically developing children of European ancestry (N = 2562-3468). We observed a genome-wide significant effect (p <1 x 10(-8)) on rapid automatized naming of letters (RANlet) for variants on 18q12.2, within MIR924HG (micro-RNA 924 host gene; rs17663182 p = 4.73 x 10(-9)), and a suggestive association on 8q12.3 within NKAIN3 (encoding a cation transporter; rs16928927, p = 2.25 x 10(-8)). rs17663182 (18q12.2) also showed genome-wide significant multivariate associations with RAN measures (p = 1.15 x 10(-8)) and with all the cognitive traits tested (p = 3.07 x 10(-8)), suggesting (relational) pleiotropic effects of this variant. A polygenic risk score (PRS) analysis revealed significant genetic overlaps of some of the DD-related traits with educational attainment (EDUyears) and ADHD. Reading and spelling abilities were positively associated with EDUyears (p similar to [10(-5)-10(-7)]) and negatively associated with ADHD PRS (p similar to [10(-8)-10(-17)]). This corroborates a long-standing hypothesis on the partly shared genetic etiology of DD and ADHD, at the genome-wide level. Our findings suggest new candidate DD susceptibility genes and provide new insights into the genetics of dyslexia and its comorbities.
  • Kangassalo, Lauri; Spape, Michiel; Ravaja, Niklas; Ruotsalo, Tuukka (2020)
    The human brain processes language to optimise efficient communication. Studies have shown extensive evidence that the brain's response to language is affected both by lower-level features, such as word-length and frequency, and syntactic and semantic violations within sentences. However, our understanding on cognitive processes at discourse level remains limited: How does the relationship between words and the wider topic one is reading about affect language processing? We propose an information theoretic model to explain cognitive resourcing. In a study in which participants read sentences from Wikipedia entries, we show information gain, an information theoretic measure that quantifies the specificity of a word given its topic context, modulates word-synchronised brain activity in the EEG. Words with high information gain amplified a slow positive shift in the event related potential. To show that the effect persists for individual and unseen brain responses, we furthermore show that a classifier trained on EEG data can successfully predict information gain from previously unseen EEG. The findings suggest that biological information processing seeks to maximise performance subject to constraints on information capacity.