Claudia Marzi Marcello Ferro Vito Pirrelli

Word alignment and paradigm induction

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The variety of morphological processes attested in inflectional systems of average complexity calls for adaptive strategies of word alignment. Prefixation, suffixation, stem alternation and combinations thereof pose severe problems to unsupervised algorithms of morphology induction. The paper analyses morphological generalisation as a by-product of flexible memory self-organisation strategies for word recoding. Our model endorses the hypothesis that lexical forms are memorised as full units. At the same time, lexical units are paradigmatically organised. We show that the overall amount of redundant morphological structure emerging from paradigm-based self-organisation has a clear impact on generalisation. This supports the view that issues of word representation and issues of word processing are mutually implied in lexical acquisition.


  • morphological generalisation
  • morphological paradigms
  • self-organising memory
  • word coding
  • word processing


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