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Academic Paper

Title: The Role of Evidentiality in Bulgarian Children's Reliability Judgments
Author: Stanka A. Fitneva
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Queen's University
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition; Morphology; Psycholinguistics
Subject Language: Bulgarian
Abstract: Evidentials are grammatical source-of-knowledge markers. In Bulgarian they provide information about authorship – whether the speaker has personally acquired the information or not – and modality – whether perceptual or cognitive mechanisms were involved in the information's generation. In two experiments, Bulgarian kindergarteners and third-graders (ages 6 and 9, N=96) had to decide which one of two utterances containing different evidentials to believe. Experiment 1 showed that children draw on modality information in their decisions: Third-graders favored perceptual over cognitive and kindergartners cognitive over perceptual sources. Experiment 2 showed that third-graders can also draw on the authorship information carried by evidentials: they favored first- over second-hand information. The discussion focuses on understanding the development of children's use of evidentials.


This article appears IN Journal of Child Language Vol. 35, Issue 4, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .

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