Presuppositions of determiners are immediately used to disambiguate utterance meaning: A mouse-tracking study on the German language

Autor(en): Schneider, Cosima
Bade, Nadine
Franke, Michael 
Janczyk, Markus
Stichwörter: CONTEXT; PERCEPTION; Psychology; Psychology, Experimental
Erscheinungsdatum: 2021
Herausgeber: SPRINGER HEIDELBERG
Enthalten in: PSYCHOLOGICAL RESEARCH-PSYCHOLOGISCHE FORSCHUNG
Band: 85
Ausgabe: 3
Startseite: 1348
Seitenende: 1366
Zusammenfassung: 
The present study investigated how listeners understand and process the definite and the indefinite determiner. While the definite determiner clearly conveys a uniqueness presupposition, the status of the anti-uniqueness inference associated with the indefinite determiner is less clear. In a forced choice production task, we observed that participants make use of the information about number usually associated with the two determiners to convey a message. In a subsequent mouse-tracking task, participants had to select one of two potential referents presented on screen according to an auditorily presented stimulus sentence. The data revealed that participants use the information about uniqueness or anti-uniqueness encoded in determiners to disambiguate sentence meaning as early as possible, but only when they are exclusively faced with felicitous uses of determiners.
ISSN: 03400727
DOI: 10.1007/s00426-020-01302-7

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