Syntactic complexity in the presence of an intervener: the case of an anomic Italian speaker

Karen Martini, Adriana Belletti, Santi Centorrino, Maria Garraffa

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


A robust finding from language acquisition, adult processing and individuals with language impairment is that certain Object Relatives and Object Questions are more challenging to comprehend and produce compared to Subject Relatives and Subject Questions and to other Object Relatives and Object Questions. Approaches informed by linguistic theory have been proposed to clarify the source of the difficulties with these sentences. Recent models support the idea of a grammatically based resource reduction that selectively affects sentences requiring the processing of an object dependency across an intervening subject similar to the object in relevant features (such as R for Relatives, Q for Questions, NP for lexically restricted noun phrases, Sing/Plur for number) (Garraffa & Grillo, 2008; Friedmann, Belletti & Rizzi, 2009). Whilst sentences like (1a-c) and (2a-b) are rather easy to compute, sentences like (1d) and (2c) appear to be hard.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 9 Oct 2019
EventAcademy of Aphasia 57th Annual Meeting -
Duration: 27 Oct 201929 Oct 2019


ConferenceAcademy of Aphasia 57th Annual Meeting

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