Cohesive Links with Literal and Idiomatic Expressions in Discourse: An Empirical and Computational Study
Lexical cohesion is an important device for signalling text organisation. In this paper, we investigate to what extent idiomatic expressions participate in the cohesive structure of a text. We look at the problem both from an empirical and a computational perspective. Our results show that both literal and nonliteral expressions exhibit cohesion with their context, though the latter tend to do so to a lesser extent. We also show that cohesive links identified by humans can be approximated by an automatically computable semantic relatedness measure based on search engine page counts.