Date Thesis Awarded


Access Type

Honors Thesis -- Access Restricted On-Campus Only

Degree Name

Bachelors of Science (BS)




Anya Hogoboom

Committee Members

Kaitlyn Harrigan

Jack B. Martin

Christopher Ball


Language production and comprehension are often assumed to share the same linguistic resource. However, human performance on resumptive pronouns (RP) brings a new challenge to this view. Although generally considered ungrammatical, we do find speakers producing RPs in island constructions both in natural and elicited speech (Ferreira & Swets 2005), usually with resumption. Some find that RPs are read faster in self-paced reading (SPR) experiments and argue that resumption is used to facilitate processing (Hofmeister & Norcliffe 2013, Hammerly 2021), while others show that it hinders comprehension (Morgan et al. 2020). It has remained unclear how RP helps with processing if any. Recently, Cokal et al.(2022) reported the first piece of data that showed a slower reading time in SPR tests and speculated that the processing facilitation of RP is comparable to the ambiguity advantage effect. The current study first explores the similarities and differences between RP processing and ambiguity resolution. It then shows a novel SPR experiment that tests the reading times of RPs manipulated with different numbers of feature-matching antecedents. The study concludes with supportive evidence for the confusability advantage effect for RPs in islands.

On-Campus Access Only