Learning from social interaction: The form and function of relative clauses in discourse and experimental studies with children

Brandt, Silke. (2011) Learning from social interaction: The form and function of relative clauses in discourse and experimental studies with children. In: The Acquisition of Relative Clauses: Processing, typology and function. Amsterdam, pp. 61-80.

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According to usage-based and constructivist approaches to language development, linguistic categories and structures have semantic content and a communicative function. Relative clauses (RCs) serve a variety of functions in spoken discourse. Depending on their function, RCs occur in different discourse and linguistic contexts and are marked by different formal, semantic, and lexical features. This has largely been ignored in studies that investigated children’s processing of these complex structures. I will summarize cross-linguistic corpus studies that analyzed the form and function of RC constructions in children’s and adults’ speech. Furthermore, I will summarize findings from recent cross-linguistic experiments that suggest that children’s processing of RC constructions is constrained by the form and function of RCs as they are used in social interactions as well as by the form and function of other related, more frequent constructions. Most of the corpus and experimental data come from children learning English, German, Japanese, or Cantonese because there are comparable studies, but I will also indicate when there is data from other languages.
Faculties and Departments:04 Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Departement Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaften > Fachbereich Englische Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaft > Kognitive Linguistik und Spracherwerbsforschung (Behrens, engl. Sprachw.)
UniBasel Contributors:Brandt, Silke
Item Type:Book Section, refereed
Book Section Subtype:Further Contribution in a Book
Publisher:John Benjamins
Series Name:Trends in Language Acquisition Research
Issue Number:8
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Book item
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Last Modified:10 Dec 2019 16:17
Deposited On:10 Dec 2019 16:17

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