Article published in:Applying Cognitive Linguistics: Figurative language in use, constructions and typology
Edited by Ana M. Piquer-Píriz and Rafael Alejo-González
[Benjamins Current Topics 99] 2018
► pp. 157–178
Cross-linguistic influence in the interpretation of boundary-crossing events in L2 acquisition
This chapter analyses the interpretation of boundary-crossing events in second language acquisition (SLA) to determine whether L2 learners are able to select the target-like option for the interpretation of motion events or whether, on the contrary, their choice reflects cross-linguistic influence (CLI) of their L1. The two groups participating in the study – thirty Spanish learners of L2 English and sixteen English first language (L1) speakers – were subjected to an experiment involving an interpretation task with L2 boundary-crossing events pictures. Findings indicate that Spanish L2 learners selected three possible constructions (manner verb + path satellite, path in verb + manner in satellite and a combination of both) in clear contrast to English L1 speakers who only selected one construction (manner verb + path satellite). CLI has also been found to regulate the type of boundary-crossing event selected, primarily in cases of motion INTO a bounded space in the horizontal axis.
Keywords: boundary-crossing constraint, cross-linguistic influence, lexicalisation pattern, motion events, thinking for speaking
Published online: 03 August 2018