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      The On-Line Resolution of the Sentence Complement/Relative Clause Ambiguity: Evidence from Spanish

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          Abstract

          Abstract. Two self-paced reading experiments investigated syntactic ambiguity resolution in Spanish. The experiments examined the way in which Spanish subjects initially interpret sentences that are temporarily ambiguous between a sentence complement and a relative clause interpretation. Experiment 1 examined whether the sentence complement preference found in English is observed in Spanish speaking subjects. In Experiment 2, verbal mood was manipulated in order to study the influence of verb-specific information on sentence processing. Since subcategorization for a subjunctive complement clause is generally assumed to be a lexical property of some verbs, the manipulation of the mood of the embedded verb affords us an interesting and novel way to examine the influence of lexical information on syntactic ambiguity resolution. Experiment 1 showed that Spanish speakers initially interpret the ambiguous that-clause as a sentence complement. Experiment 2 showed that verb-specific information, in particular, the information that specifies that a verb subcategorizes for a subjunctive complement, is accessed and used rapidly and affects the ambiguity resolution process. The results are discussed in relation to current models of sentence processing.

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          Most cited references 16

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          An interactive activation model of context effects in letter perception: Part 1. An account of basic findings

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            Cross-linguistic differences in parsing: Restrictions on the use of the late closure strategy in Spanish

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              Argument structure and association preferences in Spanish and English complex NPs

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                Author and article information

                Journal
                zea
                Experimental Psychology
                Hogrefe Publishing
                1618-3169
                January 2004
                : 51
                : 1
                : 59-71
                Affiliations
                [ 1 ] Department of Psychology, University Rovira i Virgili, Tarragona, Spain
                Author notes
                Demestre Josep, Department of Psychology, University Rovira i Virgili, E-43007 Tarragona, Spain, +34 77 558567, +34 77 555088, jdv@ 123456fcep.urv.es
                Article
                zea5101059
                10.1027/1618-3169.51.1.59
                14959507
                Product
                Self URI (journal-page): https://econtent.hogrefe.com/loi/zea
                Categories
                Research Articles

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