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Faculty of Asian and Middle Eastern Studies

Room 7, Faculty of Asian & Middle Eastern Studies
Event date: 
Friday, 3 May, 2019 - 16:00 to 17:00

L2 Chinese Linguistics Seminar

The study examines the transfer source at the third language (L3) initial stage by examining the acquisition of Mandarin sentence-final particles le, ne and laizhe by Cantonese-English bilinguals. Both Mandarin and Cantonese use sentence final particles to denote temporal-aspectual meanings, while English employs tense/aspect markers to express those meanings. Hence Cantonese is predicted to be the source of transfer in our L3 study on the basis of the Typological Primacy Model (TPM; Rothman, 2010, 2011, 2015) and the Linguistic Proximity Model (LPM; Westergaard et al., 2016). Data from a sentence-picture matching task confirm the prediction that initial transfer is from the structurally/typologically similar language Cantonese and the transfer is facilitative. The results also show that lack of enough evidence in the L3 input can result in unacquirability of a certain particle.

Professor Boping Yuan: