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Academic Paper


Title: THE ROLE OF SEMANTIC TRANSFER IN CLITIC DROP AMONG SIMULTANEOUS AND SEQUENTIAL CHINESE-SPANISH BILINGUALS
Author: Alejandro Cuza
Email: click here TO access email
Homepage: http://web.ics.purdue.edu/~acuza/
Institution: Purdue University
Author: Ana Teresa Pérez-Leroux
Email: click here TO access email
Homepage: http://individual.utoronto.ca/perezleroux/
Institution: University of Toronto
Author: Liliana E. Sánchez
Email: click here TO access email
Homepage: http://www.rci.rutgers.edu/~lsanchez
Institution: Rutgers University
Linguistic Field: Psycholinguistics; Semantics
Abstract: This study examines the acquisition of the featural constraints on clitic and null distribution in Spanish among simultaneous and sequential Chinese-Spanish bilinguals from Peru. A truth value judgment task targeted the referential meaning of null objects in a negation context. Objects were elicited via two clitic elicitation tasks that targeted anaphoric contexts and left-dislocated topics. An acceptability task tested sensitivity to left-dislocated object drop. Although simultaneous bilinguals were mostly undistinguishable from monolinguals, the late learners differed from both of these groups across tasks. Age of arrival led to different outcomes, with late learners showing more deficits than the child learners. Late learners avoided using clitics and relied on lexical and null objects. Residual transfer effects were observed among the child learners in the form of insensitivity to the features that serve as the basis for null argument identification and clitic deficits in production. It is also argued that transfer persists despite early and intense exposure to the second language in a natural environment because of the existence of an unmarked argument identification option in the first language.

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This article appears IN Studies in Second Language Acquisition Vol. 35, Issue 1, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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