Volume 15, Issue 4
  • ISSN 1384-6655
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9811
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In our earlier work on three Asian Englishes and British English, we showed how lexico-syntactic co-occurrence preferences for three argument structure constructions revealed differences between varieties that correlated well with Schneider’s (2003, 2007) model of evolutionary stages. Here, we turn to lexical co-occurrence preferences and investigate if and to what degree n-grams distinguish between different modes and varieties in the same components of the International Corpus of English. Our approach to n-grams differs from previous work in that we neither use raw frequencies nor (problematic) MI-values but the newly proposed measure of lexical gravity (cf. Daudaravičius & Marcinkevičienė 2004), which takes type frequencies into consideration. We show how lexical gravity can be extended to handle n-grams with n ≥ 3 and apply this method to our n-gram data; in addition, we suggest a new concept for describing the tendency of a word to occur in significant n-grams: lexical stickiness.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Asian Englishes; lexical gravity; lexical stickiness; modes; n-gram
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