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Sociolinguistics from the Periphery

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Academic Paper


Title: Clitic placement in L2 French: evidence from sentence matching
Author: Nigel G. Duffield
Email: click here TO access email
Homepage: http://www.shef.ac.uk/english/staff/profiles/nigelduffield.html
Institution: University of Sheffield
Author: Lydia White
Institution: McGill University
Author: Joyce Bruhn De Garavito
Institution: University of Western Ontario
Author: Silvina A Montrul
Email: click here TO access email
Homepage: http://www.linguistics.illinois.edu/people/montrul
Institution: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Author: Philippe Provost
Institution: Université Laval
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition
Subject Language: French
Abstract: In this paper, we argue in favour of the NO IMPAIRMENT HYPOTHESIS, whereby L2 functional categories, features and feature values are attainable, and against the NO PARAMETER RESETTING HYPOTHESIS, according to which L2 learners are restricted to L1 categories and features, as well as against the LOCAL IMPAIRMENT HYPOTHESIS, which claims that the interlanguage grammar is characterized by inert feature values. An online experiment was conducted, investigating adult learners' knowledge of properties relating to clitic projections. Advanced learners of French (L1s English and Spanish), together with a native speaker control group, were tested on a variety of constructions involving clitics by means of the SENTENCE MATCHING procedure (Freedman and Forster 1985). L2 learners distinguished in their response times between certain kinds of grammatical and ungrammatical clitic placement, as did the native-speaker controls, suggesting the attainability of L2 properties distinct from the L1.

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN Journal of Linguistics Vol. 38, Issue 3.

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