TALK, Engels, CLIN, Frans
Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Publicaties: R&D Database
The development of clause linking in second language acquisition: A Role and Reference Grammar perspective - L2 French and English
Flemish secondary school pupils (with Dutch as their first language) are taught both French and English as second languages. Their productions in both languages have been investigated previously, particularly in the field of syntax, but have not been confronted with each other so far. My doctoral research intends to investigate whether Dutch L1 pupils, throughout secondary school, follow the same developmental route in the field of clause linking for both foreign languages. The model I use to classify the clause combinations they produce, both syntactically and semantically, is the Interclausal Relations Hierarchy posited within the framework of Role and Reference Grammar (RRG; Foley & Van Valin 1984, Van Valin & LaPolla 1997, Van Valin 2005). This model, based on certain notions typical of RRG such as types of nexus and levels of juncture, assumes that the strongest syntactic links between predicates or clauses reflect the strongest semantic links between the states of affairs they represent, and the same applies to the weakest poles of both continua. Investigating a large number of spoken productions in French and English, I hope to discover whether the proposed hierarchy is applicable to both, and which aspects of second language acquisition might be language-specific rather than universal.