Article published in:EUROSLA Yearbook: Volume 10 (2010)
Edited by Leah Roberts, Martin Howard, Muiris Ó Laoire and David Singleton
[EUROSLA Yearbook 10] 2010
► pp. 220–247
The lexicon-syntax interface in child L2 grammars of Italian
Auxiliary selection and ne-cliticisation with intransitive verbs
This paper investigates the knowledge of two unaccusative diagnostics in Italian, auxiliary selection and ne cliticisation, in child L2 grammars of L1 Croatian speakers. The two phenomena are not instantiated in Croatian. Following Sorace (2000), it is assumed in the paper that the lexical-semantic aspect of these phenomena is characterised by gradience that can be captured by the Auxiliary Selection Hierarchy. Findings are reported of an experimental study in which highly proficient child L2 learners and their monolingual peers rated the acceptability of two Italian auxiliaries and ne-cliticisation with different lexical-semantic classes of intransitives by using the Magnitude Estimation technique. The learners’ judgements largely converged on those of the native speakers, suggesting that the two phenomena had been acquired in the L2. Such findings support the hypothesis predicting complete L2 acquisition of properties pertaining to an interface between two domains within the language factory (the so-called internal interfaces), in this case syntax and the lexicon.
Published online: 18 August 2010
Cited by other publications
Kasparian, Kristina & Karsten Steinhauer
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