In this paper we outline a new approach to the study of language production. Central to this approach is the assumption that communication takes place in a dynamic environment in which cognitive resources are deployed to achieve ‘Right-Time’ as distinct from ‘Fast-as-Possible’ solutions. This is based on the assumption that language production includes a single, integrated, interactive process that recruits and coordinates information from a variety of internal, external and interactive sources to build each speech segment. The output of this process is reflected in the longer of the two log-normal pause duration distributions observed in spontaneous speech (Kirsner, Dunn, Hird, Parkin & Clark, 2002). The methodology described here permits the inspection of temporally defined processes under natural speaking conditions. The procedures do not rely on the assumption that language is the product of independent components that can be studied under static, de-contextualised conditions. Results from aphasia, amnesia and bilingualism will be used to illustrate the new paradigm.
Kirsner, K., Dunn, J., & Hird, K. (2005). Language production: A complex dynamic system with a chronometric footprint. Paper presented at the 7th International Conference on Cognitive Systems. New Delhi, India, 14-15 December, 2005.