Selection of Linker Type in Emphatic Reduplication: Speaker’s Intuition meets Corpus Statistics

Abstract

Turkish Emphatic Reduplication (TER) occurs in adjectives and adverbs to accentuate their meanings. The current experimental study to investigate the selection of the linker type in TER indicated that responses from the participants correlate with some lexical statistics. The result relies on the statistics from a corpus with approximately 2 million Turkish words, which we use in lieu of lexical statistics. The frequency order of linker choice reported by the participants was exactly the opposite of the order of frequency of words in which the linker and the first consonant co-occur consecutively in the corpus. Such a direct link to lexicon was unexpected. We suggest that TER, an apparently phonological operation, depends on lexical access for selecting the appropriate linker whose cooccurrence with the initial consonant of the reduplicated word is infrequent. Our results relate morphology and lexicon in more ways than the blocking phenomena, and suggest that TER may be morpholexical.


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