Abstraction in time: Finding hierarchical linguistic structure in a model of relational processing

Leonidas Doumas, Andrea E. Martin

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

Abstract

mental representation is fundamental for human cognition. Forming such representations in time, especially from dynamic and noisy perceptual input, is a challenge for any processing modality, but perhaps none so acutely as for language processing. We show that LISA (Hummel & Holyoak, 1997) and DORA (Doumas, Hummel, & Sandhofer, 2008), models built to process and to learn structured (i.e., symbolic) representations of conceptual properties and relations from unstructured inputs, show oscillatory activation during processing that is highly similar to the cortical activity elicited by the linguistic stimuli from Ding et al. (2016). We argue, as Ding et al. (2016), that this activation reflects formation of hierarchical linguistic representation, and furthermore, that the kind of computational mechanisms in LISA/DORA (e.g., temporal binding by systematic asynchrony of firing) may underlie formation of abstract linguistic representations in the human brain. It may be this repurposing that allowed for the generation or emergence of hierarchical linguistic structure, and therefore, human language, from extant cognitive and neural systems. We conclude that models of thinking and reasoning and models of language processing must be integrated—not only for increased plausibility, but in order to advance both fields towards a larger integrative model of human cognition.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2016
EventAnnual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society - , United Kingdom
Duration: 1 Jun 2012 → …

Conference

ConferenceAnnual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society
CountryUnited Kingdom
Period1/06/12 → …

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