Download Acquisition Of Irish: A Case Study by Maire Owens PDF

By Maire Owens

This publication considers the expansion of the Irish language in Belfast this present day. The reader is invited to take a detailed examine a special vivid speech neighborhood in Belfast. through the 1960's, its participants took an immense step, once they made up our minds to create an atmosphere in which they can increase their young ones as Irish audio system. The good fortune of the initiative is such a lot basically evidenced through the regular diffusion of bilingualism all through surrounding neighbourhoods.

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In an early example of what looks like a topic-comment construction, having identified the topic/agent, she was careful to rephrase the whole sentence in the order verb-agent-objectprepositional phrase: Mamaía bheanan bhean, tabhair an bhean geansaígeansaí n-ais duit Mammywomanthe woman gave the woman, the jumper back to you (T1E5 1. 126) I will also show that what I initially interpreted as overextension of a present progressive aspect, influenced by its similarity with the English, on reflection is better seen as an active renegotiation of aspect/tense parameters.

My own particular interest in second language acquisition was sparked off by the discovery that, despite significantly different learning conditions, Eithne was going through a process similar to that described by Brown (1973) in his pioneering work. I could see confirmation of the theory that children do not simply imitate and repeat what they hear from adults but that they process the speech of others and build up a competence in the language which is stored, not as phrases to suit certain circumstances, but as elements and rules which can yield an infinite < previous page page_23 next page > < previous page page_24 next page > Page 24 number of combinations.

As I will show, her development was facilitated by the interaction process but this does not suffice to account for particular forms or the order in which they appear. The adult conversing with a small child does not attempt to teach items of grammar and evidence from both first and second language acquisition research suggests that to do so would be a waste of time (Crystal, 1976: 34-5). The explanation for the 'natural order' of morpheme development which can be seen to exist even though one might quarrel with the more extreme position on it (see Chapter 2, under 'Interlanguage'), must be sought either in the mind of the child/learner or in the workings of language or most probably in the processes resulting from interaction of the two.

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