Open AccessArticle
Investigating Gender Assignment Strategies in Mixed Purepecha–Spanish Nominal Constructions
Languages 2018, 3(3), 28; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3030028 (registering DOI) -
Abstract
Purepecha has no grammatical gender, whereas Spanish has a binary masculine–feminine system. In this paper we investigate how early sequential Purepecha–Spanish bilinguals assign gender to Purepecha nouns inserted into an otherwise Spanish utterance, using a director-matcher production task and an online forced-choice acceptability
[...] Read more.
Purepecha has no grammatical gender, whereas Spanish has a binary masculine–feminine system. In this paper we investigate how early sequential Purepecha–Spanish bilinguals assign gender to Purepecha nouns inserted into an otherwise Spanish utterance, using a director-matcher production task and an online forced-choice acceptability judgement task. The results of the production task indicate a strong preference for masculine gender, irrespective of the gender of the noun’s translation equivalent, the so-called “masculine default” option. Participants in the comprehension task were influenced by the orthography of the Purepecha noun in the -a ending condition, leading them to assign feminine gender agreement to nouns that are masculine in Spanish, but preferred the masculine default strategy again in the -i/-u ending condition. The absence of the “analogical criterion” in both tasks contrasts with the results of some previous studies, underlining the need for more comparable data in terms of task type. Our results also highlight how task type can influence the choices speakers make, in this context, in terms of the choice of grammatical gender agreement strategy. Task type should therefore be carefully controlled in future studies. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Language Dominance, Verbal Fluency, and Language Control in two Groups of Russian–English Bilinguals
Languages 2018, 3(3), 27; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3030027 -
Abstract
This study explored language dominance, verbal fluency, and language control abilities of two groups of younger and older Russian–English bilinguals who had spent similar amounts of time as immigrants in the U.S. Verbal fluency tasks (based on letter and semantic cues, including a
[...] Read more.
This study explored language dominance, verbal fluency, and language control abilities of two groups of younger and older Russian–English bilinguals who had spent similar amounts of time as immigrants in the U.S. Verbal fluency tasks (based on letter and semantic cues, including a new method to elicit parallel letter-fluency data for Russian and English) were used to measure the bilinguals’ current lexical retrieval skills in addition to self-assessments of language proficiencies at time of study and time of arrival. Stroop tasks (naming colors with incongruent cues) were used to measure younger and older bilinguals’ ability to control interference during color-naming. Findings demonstrate that the older immigrants were less fluent in L2 naming tasks and that they remained dominant (more proficient) in their L1 whereas the younger immigrants had become relatively balanced bilinguals in terms of proficiency, fluent in both the L1 and L2. Younger and older bilinguals were equally capable of controlling interference across and within the two languages. We propose that it is not balance in bilingual proficiency that positively affects language control abilities, but balance as stability of language systems. Stability of language systems can be achieved if bilingual usage patterns remain relatively constant over several years and if no radical changes in language learning and maintenance efforts are required. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Acquiring L1-English L2-Spanish Code-Switching: The Role of Exposure to Language Mixing
Languages 2018, 3(3), 26; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3030026 -
Abstract
This paper explores the code-switching behavior of second language (L2) bilinguals as a lens into the development of their L2 linguistic systems. Specifically, it investigates the acceptability judgments of L1-English L2-Spanish bilinguals on intra-sentential code-switching, comparing those judgments to a group of Spanish–English
[...] Read more.
This paper explores the code-switching behavior of second language (L2) bilinguals as a lens into the development of their L2 linguistic systems. Specifically, it investigates the acceptability judgments of L1-English L2-Spanish bilinguals on intra-sentential code-switching, comparing those judgments to a group of Spanish–English bilinguals who acquired both languages as an L1. The particular issues of proficiency and bilingual language behavior are analyzed, testing whether either factor has an effect on L2 code-switching intuitions. The results suggest that both proficiency and bilingual language behavior are relevant. L2 bilinguals with an intermediate/advanced proficiency level of Spanish were more likely to align with 2L1 bilinguals with regard to code-switching judgments, as were L2 bilinguals who reported prior experience with language mixing. L2 bilinguals with lower proficiency in Spanish, as well as those who reported never engaging in code-switching, however, were more likely to diverge from the 2L1 bilinguals in their judgments. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Implicit and Explicit Knowledge of a Multiple Interface Phenomenon: Differential Task Effects in Heritage Speakers and L2 Speakers of Spanish in The Netherlands
Languages 2018, 3(3), 25; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3030025 -
Abstract
This paper compares heritage speakers and second language (L2) speakers of Spanish with Dutch as their dominant language, in order to explore the role of age of onset and manner of acquisition in the nature of the knowledge (implicit vs. explicit) of the
[...] Read more.
This paper compares heritage speakers and second language (L2) speakers of Spanish with Dutch as their dominant language, in order to explore the role of age of onset and manner of acquisition in the nature of the knowledge (implicit vs. explicit) of the subjunctive. Differently from previous studies, all items were presented orally and in written form, so that language mode of presentation could be excluded as a confounding factor. Moreover, the groups were matched on their general proficiency in Spanish using both an explicit and an implicit proficiency task. The results showed that the L2 speakers outperformed the heritage speakers in the explicit knowledge task and vice versa in the implicit knowledge task, suggesting that differential task effects, which thus far have only been attested for morpho-syntactic phenomena, can be extended to interface phenomena as well. These findings imply that age of onset and manner of acquisition have an influence in the way knowledge is represented in these two populations, and moreover emphasize the importance of using different task types in bilingual research. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Continuity in the Adult and Children’s Comprehension of Subject and Object Relative Clauses in French and Italian
Languages 2018, 3(3), 24; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3030024 -
Abstract
Subject and object relative clauses have been studied from the point of view of language acquisition and adult sentence processing. In the adult sentence processing literature, subject relative clauses (RCs) are read faster than object RCs (e.g., Frauenfelder et al. 1980 for French;
[...] Read more.
Subject and object relative clauses have been studied from the point of view of language acquisition and adult sentence processing. In the adult sentence processing literature, subject relative clauses (RCs) are read faster than object RCs (e.g., Frauenfelder et al. 1980 for French; King and Kutas 1995 for English; Schriefers et al. 1995 for Dutch). Similarly, children understand and produce subject RCs earlier and with greater accuracy than object RCs in a variety of languages with head-initial relative clauses, as English, Hebrew and Italian. These findings cannot be a coincidence but reflect the fact that what children acquire first is also easier to process by adults. In this article, we support this observation by investigating subject and object RCs in children and adults speaking French and Italian. These languages display subject and object relatives as in (1), but they also have a type of object relative in which the subject is postverbal. We replicate the observation that subject relatives are easier than object and show that object relatives as in (1b), with the embedded subject in preverbal position are easier than those with the embedded subject in postverbal position, both for children and adults. We offer an account of these findings in terms of Fodor and Inoue’s (2000) diagnosis model in light of the fact that acquisition involves processing. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
The Narrative Abilities of an English-Spanish Bilingual with Prader-Willi Syndrome
Languages 2018, 3(3), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3030023 -
Abstract
The aim of this study was to analyze the narrative abilities of a 33-year-old English-Spanish bilingual with Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS). The few previous linguistic studies examining monolinguals with PWS have focused primarily on these individuals’ narrative capacity, revealing a performance deficit in this
[...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to analyze the narrative abilities of a 33-year-old English-Spanish bilingual with Prader-Willi syndrome (PWS). The few previous linguistic studies examining monolinguals with PWS have focused primarily on these individuals’ narrative capacity, revealing a performance deficit in this area (Lewis et al. 2002; Garayzábal-Heinze et al. 2012). The present study is novel in that it examines a bilingual speaker and also tests his narrative abilities in both languages. Two wordless picture books from Mayer’s (1967, 1969) Frog story series were used as the elicitation method. The PWS bilingual produced, over two experimental sessions, four narratives (two in each language), which were compared to four analogous narratives produced by a 25-year-old typically developing bilingual with a comparable linguistic background and proficiency level in Spanish and English. Following Gonçalves and collaborators’ (Gonçalves et al. 2001a, 2001b, 2001c) narrative evaluation protocol, the narratives were analyzed according to three dimensions: narrative structure and coherence, narrative process and complexity, and narrative content and multiplicity. Overall, the results revealed that the PWS bilingual (1) presented a poor narration ability in both languages, with narrative content and multiplicity being the least impaired; (2) showed better narrative abilities during the second experimental session (i.e., narrative abilities improved with experience/practice); and (3) did not show typically developing behavior but a comparable performance to that of monolingual speakers with PWS. These findings suggest that bilingualism should not be discouraged in PWS populations and that special attention should be given to the development of their narrative abilities in their school curriculum. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Clitic Production in Bilingual Children: When Exposure Matters
Languages 2018, 3(3), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3030022 -
Abstract
The aim of this work is to investigate how bilingual children perform with respect to monolingual children in a task eliciting direct object clitic pronouns in Italian. Clitic production is considered a good clinical marker for Italian monolingual children suffering from specific language
[...] Read more.
The aim of this work is to investigate how bilingual children perform with respect to monolingual children in a task eliciting direct object clitic pronouns in Italian. Clitic production is considered a good clinical marker for Italian monolingual children suffering from specific language impairment (SLI) (Bortolini et al. 2006). Moreover, this task is reported to be particularly challenging for early second language children (EL2), who are less accurate than their peers in this task (Vender et al. 2016). Even though the typology of errors committed by the two populations (non-impaired bilinguals and SLI children) is generally different, it can be difficult to keep them apart from each other and, as a consequence, to identify a language impairment in bilingual children. However, it has been suggested that the difficulties exhibited by EL2 children in clitic production are related to their competence in their L2 and that they should disappear as soon as their mastery of the L2 increases. To test this prediction, we assessed clitic production in a group of 31 bilingual children having Italian as their L2 (mean age 10;2), comparing their performance to that of a group of 33 Italian monolingual children (mean age 10;2). The bilingual children used their L1 on a daily basis, as assessed by means of a bilingual exposure questionnaire, and had on average eight years of exposure to Italian; moreover, they performed similarly to monolinguals in a receptive vocabulary task, indicating that their competence in Italian was good. Consistently with our predictions, we found that bilingual children performed very accurately in the clitic elicitation task, similarly to monolinguals, confirming that the deficits previously found in EL2 children were not related to bilingualism itself, but more likely to their still incomplete competence in Italian. Full article
Open AccessArticle
Typological Differences in Morphological Patterns, Gender Features, and Thematic Structure in the L2 Acquisition of Ashaninka Spanish
Languages 2018, 3(2), 21; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020021 -
Abstract
It has been widely argued that morphological competence, particularly functional morphology, represents the bottleneck of second language acquisition (Jensen et al. 2017; Lardiere 1998, 2005; Slabakova 2008, 2009, 2013). In this study, we explore three challenging aspects of the morphology of Spanish among
[...] Read more.
It has been widely argued that morphological competence, particularly functional morphology, represents the bottleneck of second language acquisition (Jensen et al. 2017; Lardiere 1998, 2005; Slabakova 2008, 2009, 2013). In this study, we explore three challenging aspects of the morphology of Spanish among advanced L1 Ashaninka—L2 Spanish speakers: (i) the acquisition of proclitics and enclitics with inflected verbs; (ii) the distribution of accusative clitics according to the thematic role of the direct object in anaphoric and doubling structures; and (iii) the distribution of clitic forms and their association with gender features. Our results show evidence of the L2 acquisition of clitic structures in L2 Spanish speakers, and no difference between native and L2 speakers regarding sensitivity to thematic roles. However, there are statistically significant differences between groups in the distribution of the gender specification of the clitic antecedents or doubled determiner phrases (DPs). We take these results as evidence in support of the view that morphological patterns can be acquired (proclitics vs. suffixes) as well as preferences for mapping thematic roles onto clitics, but subtle differences in the continuum of preferences for mapping gender features are more difficult to acquire. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessCorrection
Correction: Deuchar, M.; Stammers, J.R. English-Origin Verbs in Welsh: Adjudicating between Two Theoretical Approaches. Languages 2016, 1, 7
Languages 2018, 3(2), 20; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020020 -
Open AccessReview
From the Field to the Lab: A Converging Methods Approach to the Study of Codeswitching
Languages 2018, 3(2), 19; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020019 -
Abstract
Variation in the ways by which an individual processes codeswitched language may reveal fundamental dynamics of the language system that are otherwise obscured under unilingual conditions. Despite this, an important aspect that has been largely neglected in the field is the role of
[...] Read more.
Variation in the ways by which an individual processes codeswitched language may reveal fundamental dynamics of the language system that are otherwise obscured under unilingual conditions. Despite this, an important aspect that has been largely neglected in the field is the role of the bilingual experience in language processing. Drawing on corpus-driven and experimental research, the corpus-to-cognition approach to codeswitching integrates field- and laboratory-based work to examine how the bilingual experience may influence language processing. In this review, we elaborate on the best practices for investigating codeswitching, with converging evidence from different methodologies across different bilingual populations. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Acquisition of French Causatives: Parallels to English Passives
Languages 2018, 3(2), 18; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020018 -
Abstract
Guasti (2016) notes similarities between English get- and be-passives, and Romance causatives of the faire-par and faire-infinitif types, respectively. On this basis she conjectures that faire-infinitif will show an acquisitional delay similar to that found for English be-passives, which are
[...] Read more.
Guasti (2016) notes similarities between English get- and be-passives, and Romance causatives of the faire-par and faire-infinitif types, respectively. On this basis she conjectures that faire-infinitif will show an acquisitional delay similar to that found for English be-passives, which are not mastered until sometime after the age of four. Here, this prediction is tested and supported for French faire-infinitif causatives of transitive verbs. To explain the delay, the Universal Freezing Hypothesis (UFH) of Snyder and Hyams (2015) is extended to this type of causative: a restriction on movement is recast as a restriction on AGREE. A novel prediction, that faire causatives involving unergative or unaccusative verbs will be acquired much earlier, is also tested and supported. Finally, English get-passives and French “reflexive causative passives” are examined in light of the fact that both are acquired substantially earlier than age four. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Null Subject Occurrence in Monolingual Spanish SLI: A Discriminant Function Analysis
Languages 2018, 3(2), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020017 -
Abstract
Background: Child Spanish-speakers appear to use more null subjects than do adults. Null subject use, like the use of tense marking, is sensitive to discourse-pragmatics. Because tense marking has been used to identify child Spanish-speakers with specific language impairment (SLI) with near
[...] Read more.
Background: Child Spanish-speakers appear to use more null subjects than do adults. Null subject use, like the use of tense marking, is sensitive to discourse-pragmatics. Because tense marking has been used to identify child Spanish-speakers with specific language impairment (SLI) with near good sensitivity and specificity (89%), null subject use may as well, following the predictions of the Interface Deficit Hypothesis. We investigate the possibility that null subject occurrence may form part of a useful discriminant function for the identification of monolingual child Spanish-speakers diagnosed with specific language impairment. Methods: We evaluate the rate of null subject expression from spontaneous production data, together with results from independent measures of another discourse-sensitive construction, verb finiteness, in child Spanish. We perform a discriminant function analysis, using null subject expression as a target variable, among others, to classify monolingual child Spanish-speakers (N = 40) as SLI or as typically-developing (TD). Results: The SLI group is shown to have significantly higher scores than the TD group on null subject expression. Multiple discriminant functions, including the null subject variable with tense measures, and in combination with mean length of utterance in words (MLUw), are shown to provide good sensitivity and specificity (<90%) in the classification of children as SLI vs. TD. Conclusion: Our findings support the contention that null subject occurrence is a plausible reflection of the Interface Deficit of SLI for Spanish-speaking children. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Examining the Collocational Knowledge of Libyan Arabic-Speaking Learners of English in Different Learning Environments: Classroom Learning vs. Naturalistic Learning
Languages 2018, 3(2), 16; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020016 -
Abstract
The recognition that collocation is an important, yet challenging, variable in second language development has attracted extensive research into how to enhance collocation learning. This study examines the collocational knowledge of Libyan Arabic-speaking learners of English by focusing on the influence of two
[...] Read more.
The recognition that collocation is an important, yet challenging, variable in second language development has attracted extensive research into how to enhance collocation learning. This study examines the collocational knowledge of Libyan Arabic-speaking learners of English by focusing on the influence of two main factors, the learning environment and the native language (L1), since it has been claimed that these factors affect L2 collocation development. Unlike previous studies on collocations which have largely focused on testing classroom learners, this study compares the use of English collocations by both naturalistic learners and classroom learners to explore which learning environment enhances collocation development more. Thirty-six Libyan learners participated in this study (18 formal classroom learners and 18 informal naturalistic learners); they were asked to complete production and reception tests of English collocations. A questionnaire and a vocabulary recognition task (VRT) were additionally used to facilitate interpretation of the data, by eliciting information about learners’ degrees of exposure to informal, naturalistic English and their knowledge of the individual words in collocations. The results showed that collocations are a problematic aspect of language for all L2 learners in the study. However, a naturalistic setting was found to provide a better learning environment for collocation development than a classroom setting. Additionally, the native language of the learner was also found to have an effect on their L2 collocational knowledge. This influence had more of a positive effect on naturalistic learners’ knowledge, and a more negative effect on classroom learners’ knowledge. The findings also revealed a strong correlation between learners’ collocational knowledge and their amount of exposure to informal, naturalistic English. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Acquisition of L2 French Object Pronouns by Advanced Anglophone Learners
Languages 2018, 3(2), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020015 -
Abstract
The role native language transfer plays in L2 acquisition raises the question of whether L1 constitutes a permanent representational deficit to mastery of the L2 morphosyntax and prosody or if it can eventually be overcome. Earlier research has shown that beginning and low
[...] Read more.
The role native language transfer plays in L2 acquisition raises the question of whether L1 constitutes a permanent representational deficit to mastery of the L2 morphosyntax and prosody or if it can eventually be overcome. Earlier research has shown that beginning and low intermediate Anglophone L2 French learners are insensitive to French morphosyntactic and prosodic constraints in using in situ pronouns transferred from the L1. The prosodic transfer hypothesis (PTH) proposes that native prosodic structures may be adapted to facilitate acquisition of L2 prosodic structure. Our study presents new evidence from three Anglophone advanced learners of L2 French that indicates ceiling performance for pronoun production (99% accuracy in 300 tokens over nine interviews) and grammaticality judgment (98% accuracy). This native-like performance demonstrates target French morphosyntax and prosody, built—as predicted by the PTH—by licensing pronominal free clitics in a new pre-verbal L2 position distinct from post-verbal L1. Furthermore, the learners’ data confirms accurate prosody by way of appropriate prominence patterns in clitic + host sequences, correct use of clitics with prefixed verbs, use of stacked pronouns, as well as correct prosodic alternations involving liaison and elision. These results counter impaired representation approaches and suggest early missing inflection may be overcome. Full article
Open AccessArticle
On Convergence, Ongoing Language Change, and Crosslinguistic Influence in Direct Object Expression in Catalan–Spanish Bilingualism
Languages 2018, 3(2), 14; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020014 -
Abstract
The present study explores two morphological differences in direct object expression between Spanish and Catalan: Differential Object Marking (DOM), and the accusative clitics el /l/ vs. ho /u/. Both phenomena are regulated by semantic features, such as animacy and specificity/definiteness. The study experimentally
[...] Read more.
The present study explores two morphological differences in direct object expression between Spanish and Catalan: Differential Object Marking (DOM), and the accusative clitics el /l/ vs. ho /u/. Both phenomena are regulated by semantic features, such as animacy and specificity/definiteness. The study experimentally tested 57 Catalan–Spanish bilinguals with different degrees of language dominance in their comprehension and production of these Catalan constructions in order to explore the degree of structural convergence. The results show that with respect to DOM, bilinguals systematically accept ample optionality, creating a new language variety, the bilingual variety, with properties similar and different from both Spanish and Catalan. With respect to the accusative clitics, a certain degree of functional interference in the grammar of Spanish-dominant bilinguals is found. These results illustrate, on the one hand, structural convergence in DOM, culminating in an internal language change accelerated by language contact, and, on the other hand, incipient language transfer from the dominant language in the expression of accusative clitics. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Does Typological Proximity Really Matter? Evidence from Mandarin and Brazilian Portuguese-Speaking Learners of Spanish
Languages 2018, 3(2), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020013 -
Abstract
The present study examines the role of typological proximity in the acquisition of Differential Object Marking (DOM) in Spanish among eighteen (n = 18) Mandarin-speaking second language (L2) learners and sixteen (n = 16) Spanish heritage speakers (HSs) with Brazilian Portuguese
[...] Read more.
The present study examines the role of typological proximity in the acquisition of Differential Object Marking (DOM) in Spanish among eighteen (n = 18) Mandarin-speaking second language (L2) learners and sixteen (n = 16) Spanish heritage speakers (HSs) with Brazilian Portuguese (BP) as their dominant language. Specifically, we investigate the extent to which language proximity (languages are members of the same family) plays a role in the complete specification of the relevant features constraining DOM marking in Spanish. Results from an elicited production task and an acceptability judgment task (AJT) showed no support for the typological proximity model (Rothman 2010). There were also no age of onset of acquisition effects, in contrast to what was expected. The post-puberty Mandarin L2 learners outperformed the BP HSs in most of the conditions examined, suggesting a role for language instruction. Results are discussed along the lines of Liceras and Alba de la Fuente’s (2015) proposal whereby the locus of transfer is more related to the typological similarity between the languages at the microparametric level than to language proximity itself. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
The Mixed Effects of Phonetic Input Variability on Relative Ease of L2 Learning: Evidence from English Learners’ Production of French and Spanish Stop-Rhotic Clusters
Languages 2018, 3(2), 12; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020012 -
Abstract
We examined the consequences of within-category phonetic variability in the input on non-native learners’ production accuracy. Following previous empirical research on the L2 acquisition of phonetics and the lexicon, we tested the hypothesis that phonetic variability facilitates learning by analyzing English-speaking learners’ production
[...] Read more.
We examined the consequences of within-category phonetic variability in the input on non-native learners’ production accuracy. Following previous empirical research on the L2 acquisition of phonetics and the lexicon, we tested the hypothesis that phonetic variability facilitates learning by analyzing English-speaking learners’ production of French and Spanish word-medial stop-rhotic clusters, which differ from their English counterparts in terms of stop and rhotic voicing and manner. Crucially, for both the stops and rhotics, there are differences in within-language variability. Twenty native speakers per language and 39 L1 English-learners of French (N = 20) and Spanish (N = 19) of intermediate and advanced proficiency performed a carrier-sentence reading task. A given parameter was deemed to have been acquired when the learners’ production fell within the range of attested native speaker values. An acoustic analysis of the data partially supports the facilitative effect of phonetic variability. To account for the unsupported hypotheses, we discuss a number of issues, including the difficulty of measuring variability, the need to determine the extent to which learners’ perception shapes intake, and the challenge of teasing apart the effects of input variability from those of transferred L1 articulatory patterns. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
The Interpretation of Pronouns across Spanish-Speaking Populations
Languages 2018, 3(2), 11; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020011 -
Abstract
In this paper, we will present data from both Spanish acquisition and aphasia on the Pronoun Interpretation Problem (PIP), according to which children allow pronouns to be identified with local c-commanding antecedents. Although it has recently been claimed that the PIP is, to
[...] Read more.
In this paper, we will present data from both Spanish acquisition and aphasia on the Pronoun Interpretation Problem (PIP), according to which children allow pronouns to be identified with local c-commanding antecedents. Although it has recently been claimed that the PIP is, to a great extent, an experimental artifact, there are good reasons to believe that there is something “real” in the effect. As with many phenomena from acquisition, researchers have tried to explain this development in terms of “learning”, or more concretely, in terms of “parameter setting”. Children either must set the right local domain for the application of Principle B or they must set a +/− Principle B parameter. However, considering the PIP as an acquisition problem is problematic since it is difficult to see how children can converge on the target grammar without negative evidence. In this paper, we will defend an alternative approach, according to which the PIP is portrayed as the result of interplay between properties of predicates and different kinds of pronouns on the one hand, and language processing factors on the other. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessArticle
Language Mixing in the Nominal Phrase: Implications of a Distributed Morphology Perspective
Languages 2018, 3(2), 10; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020010 -
Abstract
This paper investigates a pattern found in Spanish–English mixed language corpora whereby it is common to switch from a Spanish determiner to an English noun (e.g., la house, ‘the house’), but rare to switch from an English determiner to a Spanish noun
[...] Read more.
This paper investigates a pattern found in Spanish–English mixed language corpora whereby it is common to switch from a Spanish determiner to an English noun (e.g., la house, ‘the house’), but rare to switch from an English determiner to a Spanish noun (e.g., the casa, ‘the house’). Unlike previous theoretical accounts of this asymmetry, that which is proposed here follows assumptions of the Distributed Morphology (DM) framework, specifically those regarding the relationship between grammatical gender and nominal declension class in Spanish. Crucially, and again in contrast to previous accounts, it is demonstrated that this approach predicts no such asymmetry for French–English. This hypothesis is tested experimentally using an acceptability judgment task with self-paced reading, and as expected, no evidence is found for an asymmetry. This experiment is also used to test predictions regarding how English nominal roots in mixed nominal phrases are assigned grammatical gender, and the impact of language background factors such as age of acquisition. Evidence is found that bilinguals attempt to assign analogical gender if possible, but that late sequential bilinguals have a stronger preference for this option than do simultaneous bilinguals. Full article
Figures

Figure 1

Open AccessEditorial
Languages Will Apply a Double-Blind Review Process
Languages 2018, 3(2), 9; https://doi.org/10.3390/languages3020009 -
Abstract
Peer review is an essential part in the publication process, and ensures that Languages maintains high quality standards for its published papers [...]
Full article