Sentence Reanalysis, and Visibility

  • Lyn Frazier
  • Charles CliftonJr.
Part of the Studies in Theoretical Psycholinguistics book series (SITP, volume 21)


Serial theories of sentence processsing specify that the processor pursues just a single syntactic analysis of a sentence until that analysis becomes implausible or untenable, at which point revision of the first analysis occurs. Many theories of revision have been proposed in recent years. Here it is argued that revision cost cannot be calculated in purely structural terms: reanalysis complexity is a function of sentence token, not sentence type. It is also argued that a theory of revisions must include a Minimal Revisions principle. Finally, in revision and in first analysis, more recently postulated nodes provide preferred or more “visible” attachment sites than more distant nodes. Several types of evidence are used to support a Visibility principle which, it is suggested, may replace principles such as Late Closure (Frazier, 1978) or Recency (Gibson, 1991).


Relative Clause Ambiguity Resolution Sentence Processing Head Noun Main Clause 
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 Dordrecht 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Lyn Frazier
    • 1
  • Charles CliftonJr.
    • 1
  1. 1.University of MassachusettsAmherstUSA

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