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ERIC Number: EJ1122624
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Jan
Pages: 38
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0305-0009
How Do Language-Specifc Characteristics Affect the Acquisition of Different Relative Clause Types? Evidence from Finnish
Kirjavainen, Minna; Kidd, Evan; Lieven, Elena
Journal of Child Language, v44 n1 p120-157 Jan 2017
We report three studies (one corpus, two experimental) that investigated the acquisition of relative clauses (RCs) in Finnish-speaking children. Study 1 found that Finnish children's naturalistic exposure to RCs predominantly consists of non-subject relatives (i.e. oblique, object) which typically have inanimate head nouns. Study 2 tested children's comprehension of subject, object, and two types of oblique relatives. No difference was found in the children's performance on different structures, including a lack of previously widely reported asymmetry between subject and object relatives. However, children's comprehension was modulated by animacy of the head referent. Study 3 tested children's production of the same RC structures using sentence repetition. Again we found no subject-object asymmetry. The pattern of results suggested that distributional frequency patterns and the relative complexity of the relativizer contribute to the difficulty associated with particular RC structures.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A