How Wide the Divide? – Theorizing ‘Constructions’ in Generative and Usage-Based Frameworks

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What is the nature and function of mental representations in cognitive science, and in human language in particular? How do they come into existence and interact, and how is the information attributed to them stored in and retrieved from the human mind? Some theories treat constructions as primitive entities used for structure-building, central in both production and comprehension, while other theories only admit construction-like entities as devices to map the structure into semantics or to relate them to specific morphophonological exponents. In this positional piece, we seek to elucidate areas of commonality across what have traditionally been divergent approaches to the role of constructions in language. Here we outline a robust specification of the differences in how chunks of structure containing information are treated in the two main approaches, and we seek to offer a path toward a more unified theoretical stance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number601303
JournalFrontiers in Psychology
StatePublished - Feb 26 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Psychology


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