Edited by Satomi Kawaguchi, Bruno Di Biase and Yumiko Yamaguchi
[Processability Approaches to Language Acquisition Research & Teaching 9] 2023
► pp. 63–90
This study tests the applicability of the Lexical Mapping Hypothesis (LMH) to the L2 acquisition of Chinese syntax within a Processability Theory framework. The LMH makes testable predictions for L2 acquisition based on the mapping between argument-structure and functional-structure. Empirical evidence from typologically diverse languages for the LMH is not robust as yet and does not include any L2 Chinese empirical study so far. This study ventures to fill the gap by testing the LMH for the acquisition of Chinese L2. Data for this investigation comes from a one-year longitudinal study on the oral production by three adult beginning learners of L2 Chinese in a Chinese university. Results show that the observed acquisition sequence of the investigated structures was consistent with the hypothesized LMT-based processing hierarchy applied to Chinese L2. This study contributes empirical evidence for the LMH, and supports the hypothesized intermediate stage, i.e., ‘default mapping and additional argument’.