The selection of homograph meaning: Word association when context changes

Department of Psychology, University of Texas, Arlington 76019-0528, USA.
Memory & Cognition (Impact Factor: 1.92). 08/2000; 28(5):766-73. DOI: 10.3758/BF03198411
Source: PubMed


In a study of lexical ambiguity processing, responses to homographs were examined in a word association task. The context of repeated exposures of a homograph was manipulated by requiring a response to a word related to a meaning of the homograph on the trial prior to homograph presentation. A change of that relationship reduced the effectiveness of the contextual item as a prime on the second occurrence of the homograph. In response to a third unprimed occurrence of the homograph, associations were consistent with a conclusion that when semantic contexts are opposed, a "primacy effect" is obtained. The overall effects in the studies reported are seen as consistent with the theoretical view of Simpson and Kang (1994) that processing and responding to one meaning of a homograph result in the inhibition of alternative meanings. A mechanism to account for that inhibition is proposed.

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Available from: Stephanie A Berger, Jul 13, 2015
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    • "Toda acción del organismo no es más que el resultado de una selección por inhibición. En lo que respecta al lenguaje, es bien sabido que a pesar de que el tren lingüístico es continuo y sin pausas que delimiten las unidades significativas (Cutler, Demuth & McQueen, 2002), es necesario un mecanismo poderoso de desambiguación por inhibición que evite perderse en él (Paul, Kellas, Martin & Clark, 1992; Simpson & Kang, 1994; Gernsbacher & Faust, 1991; Faust & Gernsbacher, 1996; Gorfein, Berger & Bubka, 2000). Ya apenas a este nivel, podría verse un principio de la represión según un sentido lacaniano, ya que se trata, continuamente, de tomar una palabra por otra (Lacan, 1957; ver también Bazan, 2007: 68). "
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