Is lexical selection in spoken word production competitive? Introduction to the special issue on lexical competition in language production

Katharina Spalek*, Markus F. Damian, Jens Boelte

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A common assumption in research on spoken word production is that lexical selection is a competition-based process among co-activated lexical representations. This assumption of competitive lexical selection has been challenged by an alternative account, which places competition at a postlexical response selection stage. A complex pattern of empirical findings from picture-word interference and other tasks has emerged which constrains current thinking about word production. In this article we provide an overview over the main positions, empirical findings, and put the various contributions to this Special Issue into a wider context. The theoretical debate is far from closed, but it has drawn attention to some critical points that we emphasise in this Editorial: The speech production process needs an element of competition, but this competition need not necessarily take place during lexical selection. Behavioural interference effects are caused by a combination of facilitation and interference, but there is discord about the processing levels at which these mechanisms are located. Finally, we stress the necessity to use findings from different experimental paradigms for theory-building and advocate a shift from the narrow focus on the picture-word paradigm that has dominated the theoretical discussion in this Special Issue and elsewhere.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)597-614
Number of pages18
JournalLanguage and Cognitive Processes
Volume28
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2013

Structured keywords

  • Language

Keywords

  • Speaking
  • Word production
  • Picture-word interference
  • Competition
  • Lexical selection
  • RESPONSE-EXCLUSION HYPOTHESIS
  • CONTINUOUS SPEECH RECOGNITION
  • SPREADING-ACTIVATION THEORY
  • STROOP-TYPE TASK
  • SEMANTIC INTERFERENCE
  • TIME-COURSE
  • DISTRACTOR FREQUENCY
  • LEMMA RETRIEVAL
  • ACCESS
  • MODEL

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