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Neural Representation of Categorical Specificity for a Synonym and its Antonym during Lexical Decision in Korean Reflected as ERPs

  • Korean Semantics
  • 2008, 25(), pp.51-69
  • Publisher : The Society Of Korean Semantics
  • Research Area : Humanities > Korean Language and Literature

김충명 1

1광주대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The present study aims at clarifying the relationship between synonym and antonym with respect to their semantic similarity other than their differentiation. It's believed that the two items consisting of antonymy occupy different positions where one excludes the other from the same semantic field. Here we examined the inter-relationship between the two categories in a two-choice reaction time (RT) based on the lexical decision task and ERPs(Event-related Potentials) signatures. As expected, RTs were shorter for the condition of antonym than that of synonym relation possibly due to the prominence over the synonymous words. However no difference is found between antonym and unrelated word class. For the ERPs' component, P300s (positive peak at about 300ms after the stimulus onset) and N400s (negative peak around 400ms) morphology of the ERP reflecting the perceptual familiarity among the stimuli and semantic distance respectively, were found in all conditions. Though synonym and antonym were not differentiated in the P300, they both produced larger P300 response than other words in the unrelated condition. By contrast, the N400 of them recruited the difference in its amplitude mainly over the frontal areas. These results suggest that the structure of synonym and antonym should be constructed via identical semantic space indexed as the P300 as well as the N400 critical difference based on the specific semantic feature.

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