Memory and surprisal in human sentence comprehension

  title={Memory and surprisal in human sentence comprehension},
  author={Roger Levy},
Humboldt famously described language as a system of rules which “makes infinite use of finite means” (Humboldt, 1836; Chomsky, 1965) and this is doubly true in the study of language comprehension. On the one hand, the comprehender’s knowledge of language must be finitely characterized: the brain itself as a computational device is finite, as is the comprehender’s experience of her native language. Hence understanding is an act of generalization: the comprehender must apply the knowledge gleaned… CONTINUE READING


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