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It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

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Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Academic Paper

Title: The representation of English articles in second language grammars: Determiners or adjectives?
Author: Danijela Trenkic
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: University of York
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition; Linguistic Theories; Psycholinguistics; Syntax
Abstract: An article-choice study involving L1 Mandarin/L2 English bilinguals is reported. It tested two recent accounts on the representation of English articles in L2 grammars (where L1 has no articles). The Fluctuation Hypothesis (Ionin, Ko and Wexler, 2004) predicts that L2 speakers will have full access to UG, but will fluctuate between the settings of the postulated Article Choice Parameter; article choices will be influenced by [±specificity]. The syntactic misanalysis account, on which L2 articles are treated as adjectives (Trenkic, 2007), predicts that article choices will be influenced by the objective identifiability of referents. By discussing the notion of specificity and emphasising problems in its operationalisation, the current study introduces an innovative design to reveal that what was previously observed as the effect of specificity on L2 article choices (full UG access) is better described as an effect of the stated/denied familiarity with the referent (an extra-linguistic factor).


This article appears IN Bilingualism: Language and Cognition Vol. 11, Issue 1.

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