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A Connectionist Model of Reading for Italian

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Abstract

Classic connectionist models of reading have traditionally focused on English, a language with a quasi-regular (deep) relationship between orthography and phonology, and very little work has been carried out on more transparent (shallow) orthographies. This paper introduces a parallel distributed processing (PDP) model of reading for Italian. The model is successful in simulating a variety of behavioral effects such as the neighborhood effect and the morphological effect in nonword reading, previously accounted for by dual route architectures, and provides clear evidence that different grain sizes in the orthography to phonology mapping can be discovered even in a model trained with almost perfectly shallow stimuli.