Linguistic Recursion and Danish Discourse Particles: Language in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

Patrick Rowan Blackburn*, Torben Braüner, Irina Polyanskaya

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterResearchpeer-review


In a study involving 62 Danish children with autism spectrum disorder, we obtained results showing that the mastery of linguistic recursion is a significant predictor of success in second-order false belief tasks. The same study also showed that the mastery of linguistic recursion was not significantly correlated with success in a task involving three heavily used Danish discourse particles. This calls for further explanation, as the reasoning involved in both types of tasks seems similar. In this paper, we discuss second-order false belief reasoning, the reasoning underlying the use of the three Danish discourse particles, say what we know about them experimentally, and discuss what they do (and don’t) have in common.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication(In)coherence of Discourse : Formal and Conceptual Issues of Language
EditorsMaxime Amblard, Michel Musiol, Manuel Rebuschi
Number of pages22
PublisherSpringer VS
Publication date2021
ISBN (Print)9783030714338
ISBN (Electronic)9783030714345
Publication statusPublished - 2021
SeriesLanguage, Cognition, and Mind


  • Recursion
  • Autism spectrum disorder
  • Sentential complements
  • Discourse particles
  • Theory of mind
  • Second-order false beliefs
  • Logic

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