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On the L2 acquisition of Korean wh-constructions with negative polarity items : adult L2, child L2, and child L1 development

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Title: On the L2 acquisition of Korean wh-constructions with negative polarity items : adult L2, child L2, and child L1 development
Authors: Song, Hyang Suk
Issue Date: 2008
Abstract: This thesis investigates the acquisition of Korean wh-constructions with negative polarity items (NPls) in two ways: (i) demonstrating L2 poverty-of-the-stimulus effects (e.g., Schwartz & Sprouse, 2000) and (ii) comparing three different groups of language learners - adult L2ers, child L2ers, and first language (Ll) children - in their developmental sequences (e.g., Schwartz, 1992, 2003). The phenomena investigated are Korean wh-constructions with NPIs. While scrambling in Korean (an SOY wh-in-situ language) is generally optional, in the context of negative questions with an NPI (e.g., amwuto 'anyone'), (i) scrambling of object wh-phrases is obligatory (i.e., OSV) on the wh-question reading (an Intervention Effect, Beck & Kim, 1997) and (ii) the non-scrambled question (SOV) has a yes/no-question reading (exclusively). These properties of Korean wh-constructions with NPIs constitute poverty-of-the-stimulus problems for English-speaking learners as well as for native Korean children. Adult L2ers and child L2ers, independently assessed for Korean proficiency, as well as native Korean children and adults participated in an elicited-production task, an acceptability -judgment task, and an interpretation-verification task. The results show: (i) that adult and child L2ers performed like the native adult controls on all three tasks, indicating that they overcame L2 poverty-of-the-stimulus problems, and (ii) that adult L2ers and child L2ers go through the same development sequences in their acquisition of Korean wh-constructions with NPls. On the basis of these results, it can be argued that UG constrains (adult) L2 acquisition.
Description: Thesis (M.A.)--University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2008.
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 116-119).
xiii, 119 leaves, bound 29 cm
Rights: All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections:M.A. - Second Language Studies

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