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On the 'holistic' nature of formulaic language

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journal contribution
posted on 01.02.2021, 01:16 by Anna Siyanova
© 2015 2015 by De Gruyter Mouton. Many applied and corpus linguists entertain the idea of collocations, and other types of formulaic language, being processed as unanalysed, or holistic units. It has, indeed, been demonstrated that, due to their frequency and predictability, formulaic sequences are processed quantitatively faster than matched novel phrases. This finding implies an important role of phrasal frequency in language processing and highlights the contribution of entrenchment of a particular phrasal configuration in memory. This finding, however, cannot be taken to suggest that formulaic sequences are necessarily processed as unanalysed, or holistic units. The present paper reviews some of the recent studies and explains why a processing advantage observed for formulaic sequences over novel phrases should not be equated with holistic storage and processing. The present paper is not intended as an overview of the studies on on-line processing of formulaic language. For a comprehensive review of the method and findings specific to formulaic sequences, their on-line representation and processing, we direct an interested reader to Siyanova-Chanturia (2013) and Siyanova-Chanturia and Martinez (2014).

History

Preferred citation

Siyanova, A. (2015). On the 'holistic' nature of formulaic language. Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory, 11(2), 285-301. https://doi.org/10.1515/cllt-2014-0016

Journal title

Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory

Volume

11

Issue

2

Publication date

01/01/2015

Pagination

285-301

Publisher

Walter de Gruyter GmbH

Publication status

Published

Contribution type

Article

ISSN

1613-7027

eISSN

1613-7035

Language

en