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Languages, Volume 3, Issue 4 (December 2018)

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Cover Story (view full-size image) Languages (www.mdpi.com/journal/languages) is an international, peer-reviewed open access journal [...] Read more.
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Open AccessArticle The Interpretation of Adjective-N Sequences in Spanish Heritage
Received: 6 October 2018 / Revised: 11 November 2018 / Accepted: 19 November 2018 / Published: 23 November 2018
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Abstract
Adjectives appear predominantly postnominally in Spanish, and when prenominal, cannot be interpreted as restrictive. We explore whether heritage speakers of Spanish have the same interpretive and ordering restriction as monolinguals. Twenty-two US college-age heritage speakers and 17 college-age monolinguals from Peru completed a
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Adjectives appear predominantly postnominally in Spanish, and when prenominal, cannot be interpreted as restrictive. We explore whether heritage speakers of Spanish have the same interpretive and ordering restriction as monolinguals. Twenty-two US college-age heritage speakers and 17 college-age monolinguals from Peru completed a rating task that manipulated word order and interpretation. Items varied in word order (Adj-N/N-Adj) and interpretation (restrictive-only, color and nationality adjectives, and ambiguous adjectives, restrictive and non-restrictive), all framed within a context that favored a restrictive interpretation. Both groups judged Adj-N orders lower than N-Adj orders, and restrictive adjectives lower in prenominal position than ambiguous adjectives. Consequently, we argue that heritage speakers (HS) have the relevant knowledge regarding word order and interpretation, and the interactions among the two properties. We propose a syntactic representation involving NP-raising for both groups, and suggest that in some cases, the higher copy of the NP is deleted, resulting in the linear order Adj-N. We also argue that this analysis may explain the range of individual variation across heritage speakers. Full article
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Open AccessArticle On the History of Ante(s): Exaptation of Adverbial –s?
Received: 6 October 2018 / Revised: 11 November 2018 / Accepted: 19 November 2018 / Published: 23 November 2018
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Abstract
In this paper we will describe the historical development of the Spanish doublet ante-antes (‘before’) and explore the question whether a process of exaptation is involved (cf. Lass 1990). We will argue that the final –s of antes, that originally
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In this paper we will describe the historical development of the Spanish doublet ante-antes (‘before’) and explore the question whether a process of exaptation is involved (cf. Lass 1990). We will argue that the final –s of antes, that originally marked the adverbial status of the word, in the course of time had become a kind of morphological ‘junk’ (cf. Lass 1990) and, subsequently, could be exploited in order to encode the semantic opposition between temporal meaning on the one hand, and adversative meaning on the other hand. However, based on quantitative data we will show that the incipient semantic redistribution over the course of the 16th century rather suddenly collapsed, leading to a differentiation between the prepositional ante and adverbial antes. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Indefinite Article + Possessive + Noun in Spanish: A Case of Refunctionalization?
Received: 9 October 2018 / Accepted: 14 November 2018 / Published: 19 November 2018
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Abstract
The phenomenon under discussion is an example of a grammatical change that can be explained by refunctionalization, and as such, can be understood as the acquisition of a new meaning by an ‘endangered’ grammatical construction, which is reassigned to express another value. Refunctionalization
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The phenomenon under discussion is an example of a grammatical change that can be explained by refunctionalization, and as such, can be understood as the acquisition of a new meaning by an ‘endangered’ grammatical construction, which is reassigned to express another value. Refunctionalization involves the development of a new function (in this case a syntactic-semantic one). When an item loses its function, or is marginal within a system, it can be lost (as happens with the construction under study in Standard Spanish), it can be ‘saved’ as a marginal element (as in some areas of American Spanish varieties) or it can be reused for other purposes (as in the Central American Spanish varieties). The latter case presents new discursive values. Hence, this construction should be understood as an example of reusing grammatical functionally opaque material for new purposes. Full article
Open AccessArticle Exaptation, Refunctionalization, Decapitalization—BE + Past Participle with Intransitive Verbs in Mediaeval and Early Modern Spanish
Received: 9 October 2018 / Revised: 1 November 2018 / Accepted: 1 November 2018 / Published: 14 November 2018
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Abstract
The chapter presents the current state of research concerning the development of the BE + past participle constructions from Latin to Spanish. Starting from the description in Rosemeyer (2014) and the theoretical background collated in Kailuweit and Rosemeyer (2015), it will be shown
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The chapter presents the current state of research concerning the development of the BE + past participle constructions from Latin to Spanish. Starting from the description in Rosemeyer (2014) and the theoretical background collated in Kailuweit and Rosemeyer (2015), it will be shown that the functional change does not follow traditional grammaticalization paths. Several concepts that deal with cases contradicting traditional grammaticalization theory will be discussed. ‘Exaption’ (Lass 1990, 1997), focusing on total defunctionalization does not account for the fact that the resultative value of the BE + past participle construction, marginal in Latin, becomes central in Mediaeval Spanish. ‘Refunctionalization’ Smith (2008, 2011) captures this aspect in a more appropriate way. However, the development of the construction could be also conceived as the opposite of what Pountain (2000) describes as ‘capitalization’: a process of ‘decapitalization,’ by which a feature is exploited, not for wider, but for more restricted purposes. Full article
Open AccessArticle Acquisition of the Tap-Trill Contrast by L1 Mandarin–L2 English–L3 Spanish Speakers
Received: 5 August 2018 / Revised: 5 November 2018 / Accepted: 7 November 2018 / Published: 13 November 2018
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Abstract
The goals of this study were to investigate the developmental patterns of acquisition of the Spanish tap and trill by L1 Mandarin–L2 English–L3 Spanish speakers, and to examine the extent to which the L1 and the L2 influenced the L3 productions. Twenty L1
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The goals of this study were to investigate the developmental patterns of acquisition of the Spanish tap and trill by L1 Mandarin–L2 English–L3 Spanish speakers, and to examine the extent to which the L1 and the L2 influenced the L3 productions. Twenty L1 Mandarin–L2 English–L3 Spanish speakers performed a reading task that elicited production of rhotics from the speakers’ L3 Spanish, L2 English, and L1 Mandarin, as well as the L2 English flap. The least proficient speakers produced a single substitution initially, generally [l]. The same non-target segment was produced for both rhotics, mirroring the results of previous studies investigating L1 English–L2 Spanish speakers, indicating that this may be a universal simplification strategy. In contrast to previous work on L1 English speakers, the L1 Mandarin–L2 English–L3 Spanish speakers who had acquired the tap did not tend to use it as the primary substitute for the trill. Overall, the L1 was a stronger source of cross-linguistic influence. Nonetheless, evidence of positive and negative L2 transfer was also found. The L2 flap allophone facilitated acquisition of the L3 tap, whereas non-target productions of the L2 /ɹ/ were also observed, revealing that both previously learned languages were possible sources of cross-linguistic influence. Full article
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Open AccessBook Review Language Contact in Modern Uyghur. By Aminem Memtimin. Turcologica 108, Harrassowitz Verlag: Wiesbaden, Germany, 2016, 245p.; ISBN: 978-3-447-10631-3
Received: 10 August 2018 / Revised: 11 October 2018 / Accepted: 25 October 2018 / Published: 2 November 2018
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Abstract
The study of language contact can be approached from different perspectives, such as in terms of diachronic development, synchronic variation, structural change, or social meanings. [...] Full article
Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Language Interaction in Emergent Grammars: Morphology and Word Order in Bilingual Children’s Code-Switching
Received: 13 February 2018 / Revised: 17 October 2018 / Accepted: 19 October 2018 / Published: 31 October 2018
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Abstract
This paper examines the morphological integration of nouns in bilingual children’s code-switching to investigate whether children adhere to constraints posited for adult code-switching. The changing nature of grammars in development makes the Matrix Language Frame a moving target; permeability between languages in bilinguals
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This paper examines the morphological integration of nouns in bilingual children’s code-switching to investigate whether children adhere to constraints posited for adult code-switching. The changing nature of grammars in development makes the Matrix Language Frame a moving target; permeability between languages in bilinguals undermines the concept of a monolingual grammatical frame. The data analysed consist of 630 diary entries with code-switching and structural transfer from two children (aged 2;10–7;2 and 6;6–11;0) bilingual in Estonian and English, languages which differ in morphological richness and the inflectional role of stem changes. The data reveal code-switching with late system morphemes, variability in stem selection and word order incongruence. Constituent order is analysed in utterances with and without code-switching, and the frame is shown to draw sometimes on both languages, raising questions about the MLF, which is meant to derive from the grammar of one language. If clauses without code-switched elements display non-standard morpheme order, then there is no reason to expect code-switching to follow a standard order, nor is it reasonable to assume a monolingual target grammar. Complex morphological integration of code-switches and interaction between the two languages are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Code-Switching)
Open AccessArticle Refunctionalization and Usage Frequency: An Exploratory Questionnaire Study
Received: 9 October 2018 / Accepted: 19 October 2018 / Published: 23 October 2018
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Abstract
This paper explores the relationship between refunctionalization and usage frequency. In particular, it argues that (a) refunctionalization is more likely for low-frequency construction than high-frequency constructions, and that (b) high-frequency patterns are more likely candidates as models for refunctionalization processes than low-frequency patterns.
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This paper explores the relationship between refunctionalization and usage frequency. In particular, it argues that (a) refunctionalization is more likely for low-frequency construction than high-frequency constructions, and that (b) high-frequency patterns are more likely candidates as models for refunctionalization processes than low-frequency patterns. It proposes that folk etymology processes be characterized as a type of refunctionalization process because in folk etymology, obsolescent and semantically void morphemes are replaced with morphemes that actually serve a function in language. This assumption allows for an empirical investigation of refunctionalization using an exploratory questionnaire study. The results indicate that usage frequency indeed plays a role in folk etymology processes, and consequently, refunctionalization. In particular, participants were more likely to accept false etymologies when the proposed etymon had a high usage frequency than when it had a low usage frequency. In summary, the present study proposes a way to study refunctionalization processes in synchrony. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Auditory–Visual Speech Integration in Bipolar Disorder: A Preliminary Study
Received: 4 July 2018 / Revised: 10 October 2018 / Accepted: 15 October 2018 / Published: 17 October 2018
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Abstract
This study aimed to investigate how individuals with bipolar disorder integrate auditory and visual speech information compared to healthy individuals. Furthermore, we wanted to see whether there were any differences between manic and depressive episode bipolar disorder patients with respect to auditory and
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This study aimed to investigate how individuals with bipolar disorder integrate auditory and visual speech information compared to healthy individuals. Furthermore, we wanted to see whether there were any differences between manic and depressive episode bipolar disorder patients with respect to auditory and visual speech integration. It was hypothesized that the bipolar group’s auditory–visual speech integration would be weaker than that of the control group. Further, it was predicted that those in the manic phase of bipolar disorder would integrate visual speech information more robustly than their depressive phase counterparts. To examine these predictions, a McGurk effect paradigm with an identification task was used with typical auditory–visual (AV) speech stimuli. Additionally, auditory-only (AO) and visual-only (VO, lip-reading) speech perceptions were also tested. The dependent variable for the AV stimuli was the amount of visual speech influence. The dependent variables for AO and VO stimuli were accurate modality-based responses. Results showed that the disordered and control groups did not differ in AV speech integration and AO speech perception. However, there was a striking difference in favour of the healthy group with respect to the VO stimuli. The results suggest the need for further research whereby both behavioural and physiological data are collected simultaneously. This will help us understand the full dynamics of how auditory and visual speech information are integrated in people with bipolar disorder. Full article
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Languages EISSN 2226-471X Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
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