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The Social Origins of Language

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Presents a new theoretical framework for the origins of human language and sets key issues in language evolution in their wider context within biological and cultural evolution


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Preposition Placement in English: A Usage-Based Approach

By Thomas Hoffmann

This is the first study that empirically investigates preposition placement across all clause types. The study compares first-language (British English) and second-language (Kenyan English) data and will therefore appeal to readers interested in world Englishes. Over 100 authentic corpus examples are discussed in the text, which will appeal to those who want to see 'real data'


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Academic Paper


Title: Metalinguistic Filters Within the Bilingual Language Faculty: A Study of Young English-Chinese Bilinguals
Paper URL: http://www.springerlink.com/content/y7365t454r5pn08w/
Author: Kenneth Keng Wee Ong
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: http://nanyang.academia.edu/KennethKengWeeOng
Institution: Nanyang Technological University
Linguistic Field: Psycholinguistics
Subject Language: Chinese, Mandarin
English
Abstract: This study reports two metalinguistic parameters that constitute the schematic control of lateral inhibitory links between translation equivalents within the bilingual lexico-semantic system of Green's (Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 1:67–81, 1998a, Bilingualism: Language and Cognition 1:100–104, 1998b, The bilingualism reader, Routledge, London, 2007) inhibitory control (IC) model. Building on Green's postulation that the bilingual lexico-semantic system is controlled by a hierarchy of schemas under a supervisory attentional system, the bilingual unconsciously filters activated lemmas during fluent spontaneous codeswitching, such that lemmas that are semantico-syntactically versatile or morphosyntactically transparent are likely to reach a threshold of activation first while other lemmas are inhibited. To investigate the issue, we collected code-paired naturalistic and elicited data with a focus on code-switched determiner phrases from 140 Mandarin-English simultaneous bilinguals who were post-secondary students in Singapore. We found that the semantico-syntactic and morpho-syntactic dissimilarities between Mandarin and English activated both filters. As most Mandarin determiners are economical vis-à-vis their English counterparts, their lemmas were selected frequently while English lemmas were largely inhibited. It was also found that our participants preferred English nouns in filling the lexical category for their interpretable feature of number, a feature that is normally absent in Mandarin nouns.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: Completed
Venue: Springer
Publication Info: Journal of Psycholinguistic Research Volume 39, Number 3, 243-272
URL: http://www.springerlink.com/content/y7365t454r5pn08w/


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