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LINGUIST List 23.4254

Thu Oct 11 2012

Diss: Comp Ling/ Lexicography/ Semantics/ Text/Corpus Ling/ English: 'Can You Really Know a Word by the Company It Keeps?...'

Editor for this issue: Lili Xia <lxialinguistlist.org>

Date: 11-Oct-2012
From: Nikola Dobric <Nikola.Dobricuni-klu.ac.at>
Subject: Can You Really Know a Word by the Company It Keeps? An Investigation into the Contextual Influence on Aspects of Polysemy
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Institution: Universitat Klagenfurt
Program: L 792 343 - Dr.-Studium der Philosophie Anglistik und Amerikanistik
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2012

Author: Nikola Dobric

Dissertation Title: Can You Really Know a Word by the Company It Keeps? An Investigation into the Contextual Influence on Aspects of Polysemy

Linguistic Field(s): Computational Linguistics
                            Lexicography
                            Semantics
                            Text/Corpus Linguistics

Subject Language(s): English (eng)

Dissertation Director:
Allan Richard James
Veronica Zima-Smith

Dissertation Abstract:

One of the most pressing issues in lexical semantics is surely the lack of
solid empirical criteria in accounting for sense distinction. The fact that to
date the only viable mode of word sense disambiguation has been based
on the researcher's own judgment implies that clearly defining the
boundaries of different interpretations of a polysemous lexeme and
expressing such a statement in empirical (linguistic) criteria is practically
impossible. The methodology explored within the thesis promises a fully
criteria-based account of word senses based on the use of representative
language corpora. The paper aims to test this claim, raised once again by
the recently re-emerging corpus-based decompositional approaches to
word sense disambiguation (WSD), prototypicality of senses, and sense
networks. Through the application of one of the most recent versions of
this methodology, namely Behavioral Profiling, to the polysemous verb
look, the paper will try to show how reliable the methodology is in its
promise of an objective and purely linguistic account for word senses.



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