Cumulative markedness effects and (non-)linearity in phonotactics
Canaan Breiss, Adam Albright
October 2021

How do grammars assess the well-formedness of words with multiple phonotactic violations? Certain models predict that as the strength of phonotactic restrictions decrease, forms that violate multiple restrictions should be less acceptable than expected, in a pattern we term super-linear cumulativity. We test this prediction using a series of Artificial Grammar Learning experiments, in which we vary the number of exceptions to phonotactic patterns in artificial languages. We find that super-linear cumulativity is indeed observed in the conditions with the weakest restrictions. Strikingly, participants exhibit super-linear cumulativity even when the trained language does not contain evidence for it. [NOTE: substantially revised based on reviewer feedback - comments still very welcome!]
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/005169
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: resubmitted
keywords: phonotactics, super-linear, super-additive, cumulative constraint interaction, artificial grammar learning, gang effect, null parse
previous versions: v2 [November 2020]
v1 [April 2020]
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