Enriched sublexical representations to access morphological structures. A psycho-computational account

Chiara Celata*, Basilio Calderone**, Fabio Montermini**


*Laboratorio di Linguistica
Scuola Normale Superiore
Piazza dei Cavalieri
7 I-56126 Pisa

**CLLE-ERSS (UMR 5263) CNRS & Université de Toulouse-Le Mirail
5, allées Antonio-Machado
F-31058 Toulouse Cedex 9


The paper investigates the morphological impact of quantitative properties of lexical and sublexical structures in the decomposition of morphologically complex words by means of an activation-based simulation. A complex nucleus of blind-to-semantics relationships turns out to allow the emergence of proto-morphological representations and to provide a cognitively efficient route to complex word decomposition. A computational account of how this bundle of information is handled with in the lexical processing of complex pseudo-words is provided. The model is tested against an edit-distance algorithm and a non-word similarity rating task performed by a group of native speakers.