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The Price of Linguistic Productivity – How Children Learn to Break the Rules of Language - MIT Press Scholarship Online
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The Price of Linguistic Productivity: How Children Learn to Break the Rules of Language

Charles. Yang


All languages have exceptions alongside overarching rules and regularities. How does a young child tease them apart within just a few years of language acquisition? Drawing an economic analogy, Yang argues that just as the price of goods is determined by the balance between supply and demand, the price of linguistic productivity arises from the quantitative considerations of rules and exceptions. The learner postulates a productive rule only if it results in a more efficient organization of language, with the number of exception falling below a critical threshold. Supported by a wide range of ... More

Keywords: Language acquisition, Computational linguistics, Psycholinguistics, Historical linguistics, Corpus linguistics, theoretical linguistics, Morphology, Language evolution, Cognitive science

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2016 Print ISBN-13: 9780262035323
Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: May 2017 DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262035323.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Charles. Yang, author
University of Pennsylvania

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