10
views
0
recommends
+1 Recommend
1 collections
    0
    shares
      • Record: found
      • Abstract: found
      • Article: found
      Is Open Access

      Learning Island-insensitivity from the input: A corpus analysis of child- and youth-directed text in Norwegian

      1 , 2 , 3
      Glossa: a journal of general linguistics
      Open Library of the Humanities

      Read this article at

      ScienceOpenPublisher
      Bookmark
          There is no author summary for this article yet. Authors can add summaries to their articles on ScienceOpen to make them more accessible to a non-specialist audience.

          Abstract

          Norwegian allows filler-gap dependencies into relative clauses (RCs) and embedded questions (EQs) – domains that are usually considered islands in other languages. We conducted a corpus study on youth-directed reading material to assess what direct evidence Norwegian children receive for filler-gap dependencies into islands. Results suggest that the input contains examples of filler-gap dependencies into both RCs and EQs, but the examples are significantly less frequent than long-distance filler-gap dependencies into non-island clauses. Moreover, evidence for island violations is characterized by the absence of forms that are, in principle, acceptable in the target grammar. Thus, although they encounter dependencies into islands, children must generalize beyond the fine-grained distributional characteristics of the input to acquire the full pattern of island-insensitivity in their target language. We consider how different learning models would fare on acquiring the target generalizations and speculate on how the observed distribution of acceptable filler-gap dependencies reflects the interaction of syntactic, semantic, and pragmatic conditions.

          Related collections

          Most cited references96

          • Record: found
          • Abstract: found
          • Article: not found

          Do young children have adult syntactic competence?

          Many developmental psycholinguists assume that young children have adult syntactic competence, this assumption being operationalized in the use of adult-like grammars to describe young children's language. This "continuity assumption" has never had strong empirical support, but recently a number of new findings have emerged - both from systematic analyses of children's spontaneous speech and from controlled experiments - that contradict it directly. In general, the key finding is that most of children's early linguistic competence is item based, and therefore their language development proceeds in a piecemeal fashion with virtually no evidence of any system-wide syntactic categories, schemas, or parameters. For a variety of reasons, these findings are not easily explained in terms of the development of children's skills of linguistic performance, pragmatics, or other "external" factors. The framework of an alternative, usage-based theory of child language acquisition - relying explicitly on new models from Cognitive-Functional Linguistics - is presented.
            Bookmark
            • Record: found
            • Abstract: found
            • Article: not found

            Frequency of Basic English Grammatical Structures: A Corpus Analysis.

            Many recent models of language comprehension have stressed the role of distributional frequencies in determining the relative accessibility or ease of processing associated with a particular lexical item or sentence structure. However, there exist relatively few comprehensive analyses of structural frequencies, and little consideration has been given to the appropriateness of using any particular set of corpus frequencies in modeling human language. We provide a comprehensive set of structural frequencies for a variety of written and spoken corpora, focusing on structures that have played a critical role in debates on normal psycholinguistics, aphasia, and child language acquisition, and compare our results with those from several recent papers to illustrate the implications and limitations of using corpus data in psycholinguistic research.
              Bookmark
              • Record: found
              • Abstract: found
              • Article: not found

              Universal Grammar, statistics or both?

              Hong Yang (2004)
              Recent demonstrations of statistical learning in infants have reinvigorated the innateness versus learning debate in language acquisition. This article addresses these issues from both computational and developmental perspectives. First, I argue that statistical learning using transitional probabilities cannot reliably segment words when scaled to a realistic setting (e.g. child-directed English). To be successful, it must be constrained by knowledge of phonological structure. Then, turning to the bona fide theory of innateness--the Principles and Parameters framework--I argue that a full explanation of children's grammar development must abandon the domain-specific learning model of triggering, in favor of probabilistic learning mechanisms that might be domain-general but nevertheless operate in the domain-specific space of syntactic parameters.
                Bookmark

                Author and article information

                Journal
                Glossa: a journal of general linguistics
                Open Library of the Humanities
                2397-1835
                January 4 2021
                September 20 2021
                : 6
                : 1
                Affiliations
                [1 ]University of Toronto
                [2 ]University of Tromsø
                [3 ]Norwegian University of Science and Technology
                Article
                10.16995/glossa.5774
                971681f4-a332-45f5-923f-4013eae50973
                © 2021

                https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0

                History

                Comments

                Comment on this article