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  • 1.
    Andersson, Annika
    et al.
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Swedish Language. Lund University, Sweden.
    Sayehli, Susan
    Stockholm University, Sweden;Lund University, Sweden.
    Gullberg, Marianne
    Lund University, Sweden.
    Language background affects online word order processing in a second language but not offline2019In: Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, ISSN 1366-7289, E-ISSN 1469-1841, Vol. 22, no 4, p. 802-825Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study examines possible crosslinguistic influence on basic word order processing in a second language (L2). Targeting Swedish V2 word order we investigate adult German learners (+V2 in the L1) and English learners (-V2 in the L1) of Swedish who are matched for proficiency. We report results from two offline behavioural tasks (written production, metalinguistic judgments), and online processing as measured by event-related potentials (ERPs). All groups showed sensitivity to word order violations behaviourally and neurocognitively. Behaviourally, the learners differed from the native speakers only on judgements. Crucially, they did not differ from each other. Neurocognitively, all groups showed a similar increased centro-parietal P600 ERP-effect, but German learners (+V2) displayed more nativelike anterior ERP-effects than English learners (-V2). The results suggest crosslinguistic influence in that the presence of a similar word order in the L1 can facilitate online processing in an L2-- even if no offline behavioural effects are discerned.

  • 2.
    Bylund, Emanuel
    Stockholms universitet.
    Effects of age of L2 acquisition on L1 event conceptualization patterns2009In: Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, ISSN 1366-7289, E-ISSN 1469-1841, Vol. 12, no 3, p. 305-322Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study explores the effects that the age of onset (AO) of second language (L2) acquisition exerts on the attrition of first language (L1) event conceptualization patterns. The subjects studied are L1 Spanish–L2 Swedish bilinguals living in Sweden. The specific research questions addressed in the study concern the role of AO in endpoint encoding and temporal perspectivation in goal-oriented motion events. In view of previous findings on age effects in attrition, it is hypothesized that deviations from Spanish monolingual patterns of conceptualization would be limited basically to subjects whose AO is below 12 years of age. The analyses show that subjects with AO > 12 converge with Spanish monolingual controls on both endpoint encoding and temporal perspectivation strategies, whereas deviations from the controls' performance are found exclusively in subjects with AO < 12. It is suggested, in view of these findings, that subjects with early AO are more dependent on advantageous socio-psychological circumstances such as L1 contact and use in order to fully acquire/maintain Spanish event conceptualization patterns, while L1 maintenance in subjects with late AO is less dependent on these factors. It is concluded that patterns of event conceptualization are affected by age in the same way as formal language skills.

  • 3.
    Bylund, Emanuel
    et al.
    Stockholm University, Sweden ; Stellenbosch University, South Africa.
    Athanasopoulos, Panos
    University of Reading, UK.
    Language and thought in a multilingual context: The case of isiXhosa2014In: Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, ISSN 1366-7289, E-ISSN 1469-1841, Vol. 17, no 2, p. 431-441Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Situated within the grammatical aspect approach to motion event cognition, this study takes a first step in investigating language and thought in functional multilinguals by studying L1 isiXhosa speakers living in South Africa. IsiXhosa being a non-aspect language, the study investigates how the knowledge and use of additional languages with grammatical aspect influence cognition of endpoint-oriented motion events among L1 isiXhosa speakers. Results from a triads-matching task show that participants who often used aspect languages and had greater exposure to English in primary education were less prone to rely on endpoints when categorising motion events.

  • 4.
    Bylund, Emanuel
    et al.
    Stockholms universitet.
    Jarvis, Scott
    Ohio University, USA.
    L2 effects on L1 event conceptualization patterns2011In: Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, ISSN 1366-7289, E-ISSN 1469-1841, Vol. 14, no 1, p. 47-59Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The finding that speakers of aspect languages encode event endpoints to a lesser extent than do speakers of non-aspect languages has led to the hypothesis that there is a relationship between grammatical aspect and event conceptualization (e.g., von Stutterheim and Nüse, 2003). The present study concerns L1 event conceptualization in 40 L1 Spanish – L2 Swedish bilinguals (all near-native speakers of Swedish). Spanish and Swedish differ as regards grammatical aspect: Whereas Swedish lacks this grammatical category, Spanish conveys aspect through verbal morphology and periphrasis. The principal aim of the study was to explore the relationship between event conceptualization patterns and proficiency with aspectual contrasts. The participants were asked to provide oral L1 Spanish descriptions of video clips projecting motion events with different degrees of endpoint orientation (see von Stutterheim, 2003). In addition, they took a grammaticality judgment test concerning verb and gender agreement, verbal clitics and aspectual contrasts. Compared with baseline data from monolingual Spanish speakers, the results on endpoint encoding show that the bilinguals mention the endpoints of motion events to a higher degree than the Spanish control group does. Moreover, it was shown that the weaker the bilinguals’ discrimination of aspectual errors on the grammaticality judgement test, the more prone they were to encoding endpoints. This result consequently furthers the hypothesis about the interconnectedness between grammatical aspect and event conceptualization. It was suggested that this finding indicate that the bilinguals are influenced by the Swedish-like tendency to attend to the boundedness rather than the ongoingness of events.

  • 5.
    Hyltenstam, Kenneth
    et al.
    Stockholms universitet.
    Bylund, Emanuel
    Stockholms universitet.
    Abrahamsson, Niclas
    Stockholms universitet.
    Park, Hyeon-Sook
    Dominant-language replacement: The case of international adoptees2009In: Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, ISSN 1366-7289, E-ISSN 1469-1841, Vol. 12, no 2, p. 121-140Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article challenges a recent proposal for the theoretical interpretation of L1 and L2 interaction that results from the abrupt change of language environment in internationally adopted children. According to this proposal (Pallier, Dehaene, Poline, LeBihan, Argenti, Depoux and Mehler, 2003; Ventureyra, Pallier and Yoo, 2004), such children experience a total loss of their L1, while, as adults, they exhibit a nativelike ultimate attainment of their L2. These authors suggest that what they see as a total loss of L1 allows a resetting of the neural network that normally subserves L1 retention and hence permits a complete acquisition of the L2. Data from two of our own research projects, one on L1 remnants in Korean adoptees in Sweden (see Park, forthcoming), and the other on age of acquisition and ultimate L2 attainment of Swedish (see Abrahamsson and Hyltenstam, in press), which included data from Latin American adoptees in Sweden among other participants, suggest (i) that L1 remnants are indeed maintained, (ii) that L2 attainment is not enhanced by severe L1 attrition, and (iii) that there is an age dimension to both the degree of L1 attrition and the level of L2 ultimate attainment in international adoptees. We therefore contend that a maturational interpretation of language replacement data is preferable.

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