Hostname: page-component-797576ffbb-xg4rj Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-12-04T12:21:14.987Z Has data issue: false Feature Flags: { "corePageComponentGetUserInfoFromSharedSession": true, "coreDisableEcommerce": false, "useRatesEcommerce": true } hasContentIssue false

Mental control of the bilingual lexico-semantic system

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 May 2003

University College London


This paper aims to foster discussion of the means by which bilinguals control their two language systems. It proposes an inhibitory control (IC) model that embodies the principle that there are multiple levels of control. In the model a language task schema (modulated by a higher level of control) “reactively” inhibits potential competitors for production at the lemma level by virtue of their language tags. The IC model is used to expand the explanation of the effect of category blocking in translation proposed by Kroll and Stewart (1994), and predictions of the model are tested against other data. Its relationship to other proposals and models is considered and future directions proposed.

Keynote Article
© 1998 Cambridge University Press

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)


I am grateful to the referees of this paper (Wido La Heij, Stephen Monsell and two anonymous referees) for their helpful comments on a previous version of this paper. I should also like to thank Judith Kroll as handling editor for her constructive comments and suggestions and my colleagues Richard Cooper and Tim Shallice for useful discussions.