Performance Grammar

Performance Grammar (PG) is a psycholinguistically motivated grammar formalism. It aims to describe and explain intuitive judgments and other data concerning the well-formedness of sentences of a language, but at the same time it contributes to accounts of syntactic processing phenomena observable during language comprehension and language production.

Garrett (1975) identifies two stages of syntactic processing: an early `functional' and a later `positional' stage. This distinction has since been adopted by most students of language production (e.g., see (Bock and Levelt 1994)). Accordingly, we assume that syntactic tree formation in PG is a two--stage process. First, an unordered hierarchical structure (`mobile') is assembled out of lexical building blocks. The key operation at work here is feature unification, which also delimits the positional options of the syntactic constituents. During the second step, the branches of the mobile are temporally arranged by a `read-out' module that realizes one positional option of every constituent.


For recent papers on the formalism of Performance Grammar see:


For a recent powerpoint presentation see: Presentation given at COLING 2002, Taipei/Taiwan