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The best-supported language universals refer to scalar patterns deriving from processing cost

  • Martin Haspelmath (a1)

Conditional universals have always interested linguists more than unrestricted universals, which are often impossible to demonstrate empirically because categories cannot be defined in a cross-linguistically meaningful way. But deep dependencies have not been confirmed by more recent empirical research, and those universals with solid empirical support mostly relate to scalar patterns that can plausibly be related to processing cost.

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Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • ISSN: 0140-525X
  • EISSN: 1469-1825
  • URL: /core/journals/behavioral-and-brain-sciences
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