A Mathematical Model of Prediction-Driven Instability: How Social Structure Can Drive Language Change

  title={A Mathematical Model of Prediction-Driven Instability: How Social Structure Can Drive Language Change},
  author={W. Garrett Mitchener},
  journal={Journal of Logic, Language and Information},
  • W. G. Mitchener
  • Published 1 July 2011
  • Psychology
  • Journal of Logic, Language and Information
I discuss a stochastic model of language learning and change. During a syntactic change, each speaker makes use of constructions from two different idealized grammars at variable rates. The model incorporates regularization in that speakers have a slight preference for using the dominant idealized grammar. It also includes incrementation: The population is divided into two interacting generations. Children can detect correlations between age and speech. They then predict where the population’s… 
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