Browsing by Subject "biolinguistics"

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  • Purma, Jukka (Helsingfors universitet, 2008)
    The thesis aims to link the biolinguistic research program and the results of studies in comceptual combination from cognitive psychology. The thesis derives a theory of syntactic structure of noun and adjectival compounds from the Empty Lexicon Hypothesis. Two compound-forming operations are described: root-compounding and word-compounding. The aptness of theory is tested with finnish and greek compounds. From the syntactic theory semantic requirements for conceptual system are derived, especially requirements for handling morphosyntactic features. These requirements are compared to three formidable theories of conceptual combination: relation theory CARIN, Dual-Process theory and C3-theory. The claims of explanatory power of relational distributions of modifier in CARIN-theory are discarded, as the method for sampling and building relational distributions is not reliable and the algorithmic instantiation of theory does not compute what it claims to compute. From relational theory there still remains results supporting existence of 'easy' relations for certain concepts. Dual-Process theory is found to provide results that cannot in theory be affected by linguistic system, but the basic idea of property compounds is kept. C3-theory is found to be not computationally realistic, but the basic results of diagnosticity and local properties (domains) of conceptual system are solid. The three conceptual combination models are rethought as a problem of finding the shortest route between the two concepts. The new basis for modeling is suggested to be bare conceptual landscape with morphosyntactiic or semantic features working as guidance and structural features of landscape basically unknown, but such as they react to features from linguistic system. Minimalistic principles to conceptual modeling are suggested.