Chapter published in:Romance Languages and Linguistic Theory 15: Selected papers from 'Going Romance' 30, Frankfurt
Edited by Ingo Feldhausen, Martin Elsig, Imme Kuchenbrandt and Mareike Neuhaus
[Romance Languages and Linguistic Theory 15] 2019
► pp. 36–52
Portuguese as a heritage language in contact with German and French
A comparative study on the acquisition of verbal mood
Cristina Flores | Centro de Estudos Humanísticos/Universidade do Minho, Braga, Portugal
Ana Lúcia Santos | Universidade de Lisboa, Faculdade de Letras, Centro de Linguística, Lisbon, Portugal
Letícia Almeida | Laboratoire Dynamique Du Langage, UMR 5596, CNRS & Université de Lyon, France
Alice Jesus | Universidade de Lisboa, Faculdade de Letras, Centro de Linguística, Lisbon, Portugal
Rui Marques | Universidade de Lisboa, Faculdade de Letras, Centro de Linguística, Lisbon, Portugal
This study focuses on the acquisition of verbal mood in complement clauses by two groups of heritage speakers of European Portuguese (EP) (7–16 years old) with similar sociolinguistic profiles and two different dominant languages, German and French. The production of finite complement clauses was elicited through a sentence completion task. By comparing two bilingual groups with different dominant languages (a Romance language with a subjunctive mood encoding the same semantic values as EP and a Germanic language with no similar linguistic category), we discuss the relative weight of cross-linguistic influence and of amount of exposure in bilingual acquisition. The results show protracted development of both bilingual groups concerning the subjunctive, with no negative effect observed in the bilingual speakers who are dominant in German. We conclude that cross-linguistic influence cannot explain this performance and suggest that amount of input plays a role.
Keywords: heritage speakers, protracted development, cross-linguistic influence, mood selection, complement clauses, European Portuguese
Published online: 09 October 2019
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