Dissociation between regular and irregular in connectionist architectures: Two processes, but still no special linguistic rules

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 22 (6):1045-1046 (1999)
Dual-mechanism models of language maintain a distinction between a lexicon and a computational system of linguistic rules. In his target article, Clahsen provides support for such a distinction, presenting evidence from German inflections. He argues for a structured lexicon, going beyond the strict lexicon versus rules dichotomy. We agree with the author in assuming a dual mechanism; however, we argue that a next step must be taken, going beyond the notion of the computational system as specific rules applying to a linguistic domain. By assuming a richer lexicon, the computational system can be conceived as a more general binding process that applies to different linguistic levels: syntax, morphology, reading, and spelling.
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