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Language Planning as a Sociolinguistic Experiment

By: Ernst Jahr

Provides richly detailed insight into the uniqueness of the Norwegian language development. Marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of the Norwegian nation following centuries of Danish rule


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Acquiring Phonology: A Cross-Generational Case-Study

By Neil Smith

The study also highlights the constructs of current linguistic theory, arguing for distinctive features and the notion 'onset' and against some of the claims of Optimality Theory and Usage-based accounts.


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Language Production and Interpretation: Linguistics meets Cognition

By Henk Zeevat

The importance of Henk Zeevat's new monograph cannot be overstated. [...] I recommend it to anyone who combines interests in language, logic, and computation [...]. David Beaver, University of Texas at Austin


Academic Paper


Title: 'A bidirectional study on the acquisition of plural noun phrase interpretation in English and Spanish'
Author: TaniaIonin
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: 'http://www.linguistics.illinois.edu/people/tionin'
Institution: 'University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign'
Author: SilvinaAMontrul
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: 'http://www.linguistics.illinois.edu/people/montrul'
Institution: 'University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign'
Author: MónicaCrivos
Institution: 'Universidad CAECE sede Mar del Plata'
Linguistic Field: 'Psycholinguistics'
Abstract: This paper investigates how learners interpret definite plural noun phrases (e.g., the tigers) and bare (article-less) plural noun phrases (e.g., tigers) in their second language. Whereas Spanish allows definite plurals to have both generic and specific readings, English requires definite plurals to have specific, nongeneric readings. Generic readings in English are expressed with bare plurals, which are ungrammatical in Spanish in preverbal subject position. Two studies were conducted in order to investigate the role of first language transfer in this domain in both English → Spanish and Spanish → English directions. Study 1 used a meaning-focused task to probe learners’ interpretation of definite plural nour phrases, whereas Study 2 used a form-focused task to examine learners’ judgments of the acceptability of definite and bare plurals in generic versus specific contexts. First language transfer was attested in both directions, at lower proficiency levels, whereas more targetlike performance was attested at higher proficiency levels. Furthermore, learners were found to be more successful in learning about the (un)grammaticality of bare plurals in the target language than in assigning the target interpretation to definite versus bare plurals. This finding is shown to be consistent with other studies’ findings of plural noun phrase interpretation in monolingual and bilingual children.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Applied Psycholinguistics Vol. 34, Issue 3, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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