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Title: The Development of Italian Accusative and Dative Clitics in Interlanguage Grammars
Written By: Maurizio Santoro
Series Title: LINCOM Studies in Language Acquisition 23

The research reported in this monograph portrays quite an interesting
acquisition process with regard to the development of Italian clitics in L2
grammars, and, as such, shed some clearer light on several issues that are
still unaccounted for. For instance, although there is a general consensus
on their slow development, L2 acquisitionists do not seem to agree on what
may cause such a delay and what their initial acquisition stage might be.
Are clitic properties entirely (Full Transfer/Full Access Hypothesis:
Schwartz and Sprouse 1996), or partially accessed through L1 categories
(Missing Surface Inflection Hypothesis: Lardière 1998b), or derived
directly from learners’ universal knowledge (Full Access Hypothesis,
Epstein et al. 1996)?

Results show that these properties are not totally attained through L1
categories. Learners’ native language grammar does influence the
acquisition of these pronouns, but it does not entirely constitute their
initial stage. Their acquisition delay may be attributed to several
factors, namely (i) a general difficulty to ‘convert’ the syntactic
information into appropriate morphological forms, and (ii) the intrinsic
complexity of the cliticization process. Furthermore, regarding the issue
of accessibility to Universal Grammar in adult age, data seem to justify
some form of continuity since clitics, although absent in L1, are fully

Publication Year: 2008
Publisher: Lincom GmbH
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BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Linguistic Theories
Language Acquisition
Subject Language(s): Italian
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Format: Paperback
ISBN-13: 9783595865688
Pages: 136
Prices: Europe EURO 54.00