Words in the Mind: An Introduction to the Mental Lexicon, 4th Edition
February 2012, ©2012, Wiley-Blackwell
- Explores the latest insights into the complex relationship between language, words, and the human mind, creating a rich and revealing resource for students and non-specialists alike
- Addresses the structure and content of the human word-store – the ‘mental lexicon’ – with particular reference to the spoken language of native English speakers
- Features a wealth of new material, including an all-new chapter focusing exclusively on the brain and language, and enhanced coverage of lexical corpora – computerized databases – and on lexical change of meaning
- Incorporates numerous updates throughout, including expansion of many notes and suggestions for further reading
- Comprises state-of-the-art research, yet remains accessible and student-friendly
Abbreviations and Symbols xiii
Part I: Aims and Evidence 1
1 Welcome to Dictionopolis! 3
The human word-store
2 Links in the Chain 18
Assessing the evidence
3 Programming Dumbella 32
Modeling the mental lexicon
4 Brainy Matters 42
The physical underlay
Part II: Basic Ingredients 51
5 Slippery Customers 53
Attempts to pin down the meaning of words
6 Bad Birds and Better Birds 66
7 Whispering Chambers of the Imagination 80
8 The Primordial Atomic Globule Hunt 90
The search for semantic primitives
9 Word-webs 99
10 Close Companions 113
Words which cling together
11 Lexical All-sorts 119
Parts of speech
12 Verb Power 131
The role of verbs
13 Bits of Words 145
The internal architecture of words
14 Taking Care of the Sounds 157
Dealing with the sound patterns
Part III: Newcomers 169
15 Multiple Meanings 171
The polysemy problem
16 Interpreting Ice-cream Cones 182
Metaphor and metonymy
17 Globbering Mattresses 194
Creating new words
18 What is a Bongaloo, Daddy? 209
How children learn the meaning of words
19 Aggergog Miggers, Wips and Gucks 222
How children cope with the sounds of words
Part IV: The Overall Picture 235
20 Seeking and Finding 237
21 Organized Guesswork 248
22 Odd Arrangements and Funny Solutions 261
The organization of the mental lexicon
23 Last Word 267
Final comments and future questions
Jean Aitchison is Emeritus Rupert Murdoch Professor of Language and Communication at the University of Oxford. She is the author of numerous books on language, including Language Change: Progress or Decay? (Third Edition, 2001), The Word Weavers: Newshounds and Wordsmiths (2007), Aitchison's Linguistics (Seventh Edition, 2010), and The Articulate Mammal (Routledge Classics Edition, 2011).
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