Parser-based analysis of syntax-lexis interactions

in Corpora: Pragmatics and Discourse
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Abstract

In this paper we present a corpus-driven approach to the detection of syntax-lexis interactions. Our approach is based on the output of a syntactic parser. We have parsed the British National Corpus and constructed a database of lexical dependencies. Such a large-scale approach allows for a detailed investigation of patterns and constructions associated with individual lexical items found in argument positions.

We then address the methodological problems of such an approach: precision errors (unwanted instances) and recall errors (missed instances) and offer a detailed evaluation. We investigate the interaction between syntax and lexis in verb-subject and verb-object structures as well as the active-passive alternation. We show that our approach provides relatively clean data and allows for a corpus-driven investigation of rare collocations.

Corpora: Pragmatics and Discourse

Papers from the 29th International Conference on English Language Research on Computerized Corpora (ICAME 29). Ascona, Switzerland, 14-18 May 2008

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