Department of Psychology
Morphemes in the Brain/Theory from the Brain
This talk will bring the audience up to date on the continuing research from the NYU MorphLab. First, I will clarify how the separation of morphemes (minimal units of syntactic processing) from their phonological or orthographic realizations underpins neurolinguistics work on the processing of morphologically complex words, where the input to word comprehension are the realizations (“vocabulary items” in Distributed Morphology). Our brains quickly and automatically generate a parse of the linguistic input into a structure of vocabulary items, either phonological or orthographic, which serves as the basis for a-modal morphological analysis. Then, I will present new MEG data from studies of English, Arabic, and Tagalog (perhaps also Japanese) where experiments add significantly to our theoretical understanding of morphological structure and, in the case of Tagalog, help solve a long standing mystery about the representation of reduplicated words.