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On the “vulnerability” of syntactic domains in Swedish and German
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Languages, Department of Linguistics.
2007 (English)In: Language Acquisition, ISSN 1048-9223, E-ISSN 1532-7817, Vol. 14, no 1, 31-73 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Thispaper investigates the L2 acquisition of clausal syntax in post-puberty learnersof German and Swedish regarding V2, VP headedness and verb particleconstructions. The learner data are tested against L2 theories according towhich lower structural projections (VP) are acquired before higher functionalprojections (IP, CP), VP syntax is unproblematic (invulnerable), but where grammatical operations related to thetopmost level of syntactic structure (CP) are acquired late (e.g. Platzack’s(2001) vulnerable C-domain). It willbe shown that such theories do not hold water: native speakers of Swedishlearning German and native speakers of German learning Swedish both master V2from early on. At the same time, these learners exhibit a nontargetlike syntaxat lower structural levels: residual VO in the case of the Swedish-L1 learnersof German, and persistent nontarget transitive verb particle constructions inthe German-L1 learners of Swedish. I argue that these findings are bestexplained by assuming full transfer of L1 syntax (e.g. Schwartz & Sprouse 1996).

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 14, no 1, 31-73 p.
Keyword [en]
particle, particle verb construction, Swedish, German, word order, transfer, second language learner, input, V2, OV, VO, corpus, syntax
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics General Language Studies and Linguistics Specific Languages Specific Languages Specific Languages
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-98555DOI: 10.1080/10489220701331813OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-98555DiVA: diva2:174972
Swedish Research Council, 412-2002-982
Available from: 2009-02-26 Created: 2009-02-26 Last updated: 2015-02-06Bibliographically approved

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Bohnacker, Ute
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