Generic language and judgements about category membership: Can generics highlight properties as central?

@article{Hollander2009GenericLA,
  title={Generic language and judgements about category membership: Can generics highlight properties as central?},
  author={Michelle A Hollander and Susan A Gelman and Lakshmi G. Raman},
  journal={Language and cognitive processes},
  year={2009},
  volume={24 4},
  pages={481-505}
}
Many languages distinguish generic utterances (e.g., "Tigers are ferocious") from non-generic utterances (e.g., "Those tigers are ferocious"). Two studies examined how generic language specially links properties and categories. We used a novel-word extension task to ask if 4- to 5-year-old children and adults distinguish between generic and specific language, and judge that predicating a property of a depicted novel animal using generic language (e.g., "Bants have stripes"), rather than non… CONTINUE READING

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