Fact vs. Opinion: A psycholinguistic look at the interpretation of subjective adjectives
Elsi Miia Kaiser, University of Southern California
October 28, 2020 · 4:30 pm—6:00 pm EDT · via Zoom
Program in Linguistics
In today’s world, we are continuously faced with a flood of information from many channels. A fundamental step for navigating this information stream is distinguishing objective, factual information from subjective opinions. This talk looks at a series of psycholinguistic experiments from my lab investigating the comprehension of subjective, opinion-conveying adjectives (e.g. tasty, funny, frightening, unfair), focusing on two main themes: (i) the relation between subjective (and objective) adjectives and their syntactic position, and (ii) the relation between subjective adjectives and other perspective-sensitive elements, specifically (certain kinds of) reflexives and pronouns.
Elsi Kaiser is an associate professor in the Department of Linguistics at the University of Southern California. Her primary research focus is in psycholinguistics, in particular human sentence processing. She completed her dissertation work at the Linguistics Department at the University of Pennsylvania. Her dissertation focused on reference resolution in Finnish, Dutch and Estonian, using a combination of psycholinguistic and corpus data. Prior to that, sge received a B.A. in Germanic Languages and Literatures and certificates in Linguistics and French from Princeton University, and an M.A. in Psychology from Penn. She is originally from Finland.