LINGUIST List 8.308

Sun Mar 2 1997

Books: Computational Ling, Lang Acquisition

Editor for this issue: Susan Robinson <>

Additional information on the following books, as well as a short backlist of the publisher's titles, may be available from the Listserv. Instructions for retrieving publishers' backlists appear at the end of this issue.


  1. Gita Manaktala, new book: computational linguistics
  2. Gita Manaktala, new book: language acquisition

Message 1: new book: computational linguistics

Date: Mon, 17 Feb 97 13:15:14 EST
From: Gita Manaktala <manakMIT.EDU>
Subject: new book: computational linguistics


Klavans, Judith (Columbia University) and Philip Resnik (University of
STATISTICAL APPROACHES TO LANGUAGE; paperback original; 0-262-61122-8;
186 pages with index; $17.50.

Symbolic and statistical approaches to language have historically been
at odds, but there is an increasing recognition that both approaches
have something to offer in achieving common goals. The eight
contributions in this book explore the inevitable "balancing act" that
must take place when symbolic and statistical approaches are brought
together -- including basic choices about what knowledge will be
represented symbolically and how it will be obtained, what assumptions
underlie the statistical model, what principles motivate the symbolic
model, and what the researcher gains by combining approaches. Topics
covered include an examination of the relationship between traditional
linguistics and statistical methods, qualitative and quantitative
methods of speech translation, study and implementation of combined
techniques for automatic extraction of terminology, comparative
analysis of the contributions of linguistic cues to a statistical word
grouping system, automatic construction of a symbolic parser via
statistical techniques, combining linguistic with statistical methods
in automatic speech understanding, exploring the nature of
transformation-based learning, and a hybrid symbolic/statistical
approach to recovering from parser failures.

Available for discussion.
Web pages: 
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Message 2: new book: language acquisition

Date: Thu, 20 Feb 97 16:43:30 EST
From: Gita Manaktala <manakMIT.EDU>
Subject: new book: language acquisition


Jusczyk, Peter W. (Johns Hopkins); THE DISCOVERY OF SPOKEN LANGUAGE;
cloth; 0-262-10058-4; 314 pages with index; $32.50.

The ability to distinguish words within an apparently continuous
stream of speech is a crucial step for infants in learning to speak
themselves. This book examines the initial capacities that infants
possess for discriminating and categorizing speech sounds and how
these capacities evolve as infants gain experience with native
language input. Attention is paid to the ways that speech perception
capacities develop in very young children. Jusczyk also looks at how
infants' growing knowledge of native language sound patterns may
facilitate the acquisition of other aspects of language organization,
and he discusses the relationship between the learner's developing
capacities for perceiving and producing speech. One of the first
efforts to integrate the field of infant speech perception research
into the general study of language acquisition, the book fills in a
key part of the acquisition story by providing an extensive review of
research on the acquisition of language during the first year of life,
focusing primarily on how normally developing infants learn the
organization of native language sound patterns. An appendix reviews
the test procedures used to evaluate infant speech perception

Web pages:
Available for discussion.

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-----------------------How to get a publisher's backlist----------------------- Simply send a message to: (Internet) The message should consist of the single line: get publishername lst linguist For example, to get more information on a book published by John Benjamin, send the message: get benjamin lst linguist At the moment, the following lists are available: Blackwel lst (Blackwell Publishers) cornell lst (Cornell University Linguistics Dept.) erlbaum lst (Lawrence Erlbaum) benjamin lst (John Benjamin) kluwer lst (Kluwer Academic Publishers) mitwpl lst (MIT Working papers in Linguistics) pacific lst (Pacific Linguistics Publications) sil lst (Summer Institute of Linguistics) glsa lst (U. of Massachusetts Graduate Linguistics Association)