Research

My research of the last five years focused on the semantics of words. In my Veni-project, I formulated and tested a new view on how we store and interpret words. This view entails that the meaning of words is overspecified in our mental lexicon and that these overspecified representations are weakened in a context. I experimentally tested this view on the lexicon by means of several experiments and I elaborated on the theoretical implications of this view in several articles. A special focus area was formed by discourse particles. I investigated several aspects concerning discourse particles, such as their semantics and how they are acquired in a first or second language. Together with colleagues I investigated the semantics of the additive particle ook, the first language acquisition of ook and wel and the second language acquisition of the German particle doch. Furthermore, together with a colleague I analysed the meaning of the particles wel, toch and eigenlijk combining ideas from several frameworks such as discourse representation theory and cognitive linguistics.