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Nouvelles perspectives sur l’anaphore

Points de vue linguistique, psycholinguistique et acquisitionnel

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Edited By Marion Fossard and Marie-José Béguelin

Longtemps limitée à une simple perspective textualiste, l’anaphore a, ces vingt dernières années, été l’enjeu de nombreux travaux influencés par les forts courants de la linguistique du discours ainsi que par les approches cognitives, pragmatiques et, plus récemment encore, interactionnelles de la référence. Phénomène discursif éminemment complexe, l’anaphore met en jeu des mécanismes informationnels, mémoriels et inférentiels variés, que de nombreux modèles, linguistiques et psycholinguistiques, ont cherché à capter.
Le propos du présent ouvrage est double : proposer un bilan épistémologique mettant au jour, parmi les modèles et approches proposés, ceux qui ont résisté au temps (et aux modes) ; pointer les aspects du phénomène anaphorique qui nécessiteraient des investigations complémentaires. En abordant l’anaphore de manière interdisciplinaire, ce livre vise aussi à décloisonner des domaines de recherche qui trop souvent s’ignorent : il rétablit le dialogue entre approches linguistiques, psycholinguistiques et acquisitionnelles, tout en faisant place aux perspectives orientées vers la logopédie et le TAL (Traitement Automatique du Langage).
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JANUS: A framework for studying noun-phrase anaphor resolution: Alan Garnham

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In attempting to describe and explain psycholinguistic phenomena, it is possible, and indeed necessary, to proceed at different levels of generality. At the most general level, there is broad consensus that the information conveyed in discourse and text is about situations in the real world, imaginary worlds, and abstract domains, and that the purpose of language processing is to mediate between representations of these situations – situation models or mental models – and language. General principles of the mental models theory provide a computational theory, in the sense of Marr (1982), of language processing (see Garnham, 1996). Language production and language comprehension involve mapping from model to language and language to model, respectively. Models represent such things as entities (concrete and abstract) and eventualities (events, states, processes, etc.) and the relations between them. Discourses and texts typically contain repeated references to elements of the model. Such references typically use different linguistic expressions (e.g., the table, it), so an important part of any theory of language processing is to explain how the complex mapping between language and elements of models takes place.

The most general principles of mental models theory do not determine how the mapping occurs. However, it is known from empirical work that, in comprehension, for example, short-term or working memory processes operate on various superficial representations, which act as intermediaries in the construction of mental models. The use of such superfi ← 187 | 188 → cial representations explains the existence of “surface anaphora” (primarily various forms of verbal ellipsis, Hankamer...

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