Syntactic Persistence Within and Across Languages in English and Korean L1 and L2 Speakers
Syntactic priming effect
Second language acquisition
AdvisorNicol, Janet L.
Committee ChairNicol, Janet L.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractDuring the production of language, speakers tend to use the same structural patterns from one utterance to the next if it is possible to do so. For example, if a speaker uses a passive or dative construction, he/she is relatively more likely to use the same construction again in the next utterance (e.g., Bock, 1986; Bock & Loebell, 1990; Hartsuiker & Kolk, 1998): the sentence structure "persists".The current study investigates syntactic persistence in first and second language speakers of English and Korean using within-language primes (Experiments 1A, 1B, and 2) and across-language primes (Experiment 3). The target structures were transitive alternate structures (active and passive) and dative alternate structures (double object dative/DAT-ACC dative and prepositional dative/ACC-DAT dative). The experimental paradigm involved repetition of an auditory stimulus, followed by picture description. Overall, syntactic priming effects were found, although various magnitudes were observed as a function of structure; strong effects were found for "shared" syntactic constructions across languages (e.g., active vs. passive) and weak priming effects were found for syntactic constructions not shared (e.g., double object dative vs. prepositional dative) between English and Korean. Other asymmetrical priming effects were observed, reflecting differences between Korean and English such that reliable priming effects were found from L1 to L2, but not from L2 to L1 for Korean-as-L2 speakers (English-as-L1) These patterns of asymmetrical priming imply that cross-linguistic differences might interfere with syntactic persistence in production process unless speakers are highly advanced proficient bilinguals. Also, the present study showed that syntactic priming appears to be sensitive to the order of case-marked phrases in the cross-language priming condition. This finding indicates that the order of case-marked arguments is involved in syntactic repetition. It shed lights on further universal accounts of syntactic priming.
Degree ProgramSecond Language Acquisition & Teaching