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The influence of the temporal characteristics of events on adults' and children's pronoun resolution

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>31/03/2023
<mark>Journal</mark>Journal of Child Language
Issue number2
Number of pages26
Pages (from-to)391-416
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date23/02/22
<mark>Original language</mark>English


We examined the influence of the lexical and grammatical aspect of events on pronoun resolution in adults (18 to 23 years, N = 46), adolescents (13 to 14 years, N=66) and children (7 to 11 years, N=192). Participants were presented with 64 two-sentence stimuli: the first sentence described events with two same gender protagonists; the second began with a personal pronoun and described a status that could be attributed to either protagonist. Participants recorded to whom the pronoun referred, in a booklet. For all groups, Subject resolutions were more likely for events (a) without endpoints relative to those with endpoints, and (b) described as ongoing rather than completed, but this latter influence was restricted to events with endpoints for adults and adolescents. The findings provide support for the Event Structure Hypothesis of pronoun resolution (Rohde, Kehler & Elman, 2006) and provide new insights into the development of pronoun resolution.