Stereotypes override grammar: Social knowledge in sentence comprehension
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Nicola Molinaro, Jui-Ju Su, Manuel Carreiras, Stereotypes override grammar: Social knowledge in sentence comprehension, Brain and Language, Volumes 155–156, April–May 2016, Pages 36-43, ISSN 0093-934X, http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.bandl.2016.03.002
Many studies have provided evidence for the automaticity and immediacy with which stereotypical knowledge affects our behavior. However, less is known about how such social knowledge interacts with linguistic cues during comprehension. In this ERP sentence processing study we took advantage of the rich grammatical gender morphology of Spanish to explore the processing of role nouns in which stereotype and grammatical cues were simultaneously manipulated, in a factorial design. We show that stereotypical knowledge overrides syntactic cues, highlighting the immediacy with which stereotype knowledge is activated during language comprehension and supporting proposals claiming that social knowledge impacts on language processing differently from other forms of semantics.