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Title:Constraint interaction: A lingua franca for stochastic theories of language
Authors:Matthew Goldrick
Comment:Commentary on contribution by Warker & Dell. In C. T. Schütze & V. S. Ferreira (eds.) The state of the art in speech error research: Proceedings of the LSA Institute workshop (MITWPL vol. 53, pp. 95-114). Cambridge, MA: MIT Working Papers in Linguistics
Abstract:Psycholinguistic and stochastic grammatical theories of sound structure are typically stated in quite different formal vocabularies (i.e., connectionist networks vs. stochastic extensions of Optimality Theory). This commentary argues that this difference obscures a common set of core principles: in each framework, the generation of behavior can be conceptualized as the consequence of the interaction of two broad types of constraints. To support this claim, Warker and Dell's connectionist proposal is re-cast as a type of constraint-based theory. This reconceptualization not only increases our understanding of how their proposal accounts for empirical data but also allows us to better understand its relationship to stochastic grammatical theories. The connection between these cross-disciplinary perspectives suggests that the substance of theoretical disagreements reflects not principles of processing vs. grammar but rather conflicting claims regarding the precise nature of constraints and their interactions.
Type:Paper/tech report
Area/Keywords:Phonology,Psycholinguistics,Formal Analysis
Article:Version 1