Thursday, 31 May 2018 | 12:30 to 13:30

Title: “Semantic Flexibility in Language: Inputs for Lexical Resources and Lexical Semantic Models”


The lexicon is today at the core of several challenges in computational linguistics and in theoretical investigations of the structure of language. Nevertheless, few researchers have an overarching view about lexical structure, lexical semantics and the representational problems which lay at the core of the observed property of language to be semantically  flexible and context-sensitive, as disclosed by e.g. distributional analysis. The talk provides an overview of main properties of words, and how we use them to create meaning. It offers a description of the structure of the lexicon in terms of word types, word classes and word relations, and introduces the categories that are needed to classify the types of meaning variation that word display in composition. The talk merges evidence-based theoretical accounts with computational perspectives and proposes linguistic principles for the construction of lexical resources.

Short Bio:

Elisabetta Jezek is Associate Professor of Linguistics in the Department of Humanities, University of Pavia, where she has taught Syntax and Semantics and Applied Linguistics since 2001. Her research interests and areas of expertise include lexical semantics, verb classification, theory of argument structure, event structure in syntax and semantics,  lexicon/cognition interplay, and language technology. She has edited a number of major works in lexicography and published contributions focusing on the interplay between data analysis, research methodology, and linguistic theory. Her publications include: Classi di Verbi tra Semantica e Sintassi, ETS, 2003; Lessico: Classi di Parole, Strutture, Combinazioni, Il Mulino, 2005 (2nd ed. 2011); The Lexicon: An Introduction, OUP, 2016.


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