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ERIC Number: EJ1078628
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Apr
Pages: 26
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0142-7237
The Interplay of Referential Function and Character Primacy on Referring Expressions in Children's Narratives
Colozzo, Paola; Whitely, Cristy
First Language, v35 n2 p137-162 Apr 2015
This study considered the linguistic forms used by 63 English-speaking Canadian children from kindergarten to second grade (ages 5;6-8;8) to introduce, maintain reference to, and reintroduce primary and secondary characters throughout their narratives The expected referring forms were used more frequently for the best-matching referential function: indefinites for introduction, pronouns and null forms for maintenance, and identifiables (i.e., definite and possessive NPs, and proper names) for reintroduction. Developmental changes in form-function mappings were present for both introduction and reintroduction. Many children were also influenced by the relative prominence of story characters in their use of pronominals. Nonetheless, function constraints exerted a much stronger influence on referential choice than did character primacy in all grades. By systematically exploring the interplay of referential function and character primacy on referring expressions, this study adds to existing findings on many levels. It also invites future research that manipulates various features of both primary and secondary characters.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Primary Education; Early Childhood Education; Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A