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Research in psycholinguistics and in the cognitive neuroscience of language has suggested that semantic and syntactic processing are associated with different neurophysiologic correlates, such as the N400 and the P600 in the ERPs. However, only a handful of studies have investigated the neural basis of the syntax-semantics interface, and even fewer(More)
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We sketch four applications of Marr's levels-of-analysis methodology to the relations between logic and experimental data in the cognitive neuroscience of language and reasoning. The first part of the paper illustrates the explanatory power of computational level theories based on logic. We show that a Bayesian treatment of the suppression task in reasoning(More)
Embodied semantics proposes that constructing the meaning of motion verb phrases relies on representations of motion in sensory cortex. However, the data reported by earlier studies as evidence for this claim are also explained by a symbolic-semantics view proposing interactions between dissociable systems. In the experiments reported here, participants(More)
Can speech selectively modulate the sensitivity of a sensory system so that, in the presence of a suitable linguistic context, the discrimination of certain perceptual features becomes more or less likely? In this study, participants heard upward or downward motion words followed by a single visual field of random dots moving upwards or downwards. The time(More)
Understanding a word in context relies on a cascade of perceptual and conceptual processes, starting with modality-specific input decoding, and leading to the unification of the word's meaning into a discourse model. One critical cognitive event, turning a sensory stimulus into a meaningful linguistic sign, is the access of a semantic representation from(More)
Converging evidence in neuroscience suggests that syntax and semantics are dissociable in brain space and time. However, it is possible that partly disjoint cortical networks, operating in successive time frames, still perform similar types of neural computations. To test the alternative hypothesis, we collected EEG data while participants read sentences(More)
Traditional semantic theories assume that meaning arises from the syntactic combination of amodal symbols processed by a modular subsystem. This idea has two striking implications: first, sensory-motor experience has no relevance in language processing; secondly, since the domain of syntactic rules is the sentence, linguistic interpretation takes place in a(More)
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A defining trait of human cognition is the capacity to form compounds out of simple thoughts. This ability relies on the logical connectives AND, OR and IF. Simple propositions, e.g., 'There is a fork' and 'There is a knife', can be combined in alternative ways using logical connectives: e.g., 'There is a fork AND there is a knife', 'There is a fork OR(More)