Morphological Representation as a Correlation Between form and Meaning

  • Marcus Taft
Part of the Neuropsychology and Cognition book series (NPCO, volume 22)


Lexical memory exists for the purpose of mapping meaning onto word form. It interfaces with the world via a level of representation that corresponds to the presented form of the word (either orthographic or auditory), and access to this representation makes available the semantic information associated with it. Such a form-to-meaning association has been built up over repeated occurrences of the same form referring to the same thing. That is, the lexical system captures the correlation that can be found between a form and the context in which it occurs. For example, the word form cat is consistently found in a context that refers to a furry, whiskered pet that says “miaow”, even though this context might vary markedly in other ways (e.g., when referring to a cat stuck up a tree, a cat owned in one’s childhood, or a cat chasing a mouse).


Semantic Feature Form Level Compound Word Complex Word Form Unit 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of PsychologyUniversity of New South WalesSydney New South WalesAustralia

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