Event linearization in advanced L2 user discourse: Evidence for language-specificity in the discourse of Czech and Hungarian learners of English

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

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Title of host publicationEUROSLA Yearbook
DatePublished - 2013
Pages47-80
Number of pages33
PublisherJohn Benjamins
Place of PublicationAmsterdam
EditorsLeah Roberts, Anna Ewert, Miroslaw Pawlak, Magdalena Wrembel
Volume13
Original languageEnglish
ISBN (Print)9789027200075

Abstract

Within the functionalist approach to SLA, this study examines the interaction of event linearization patterns in L2 with the ways temporal information is typically structured in learners’ source and target languages. Specifically, film verbalisations and picture descriptions by Czech and Hungarian advanced learners of English were elicited to test learners’ susceptibility to restructure linearization principles in the target language. Another aim was to test whether linearization patterns within groups interrelate with L1-L2 contrasts in temporal structuring. Analyses of non-chronological order construction frequencies and of their preferred distribution across linguistic forms showed a pronounced effect of L1-specific linearization patterns on advanced learner production; and a close interrelation of event ordering preferences with L1-driven structuring patterns. These findings suggest that the process of event linearization in L2 largely rests on L1 fundaments, and that persisting L1 principles can lead to significant digressions from target-like performance even in highly advanced learner varieties.

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