Contrast relations in the early aber-clauses of German-speaking infants

Contrast relations in the early aber-clauses of German-speaking infants AbstractThe paper focusses on the early production of aber- (‘but’-) clauses in German L1-acquisition. It aims to explain the delay in the realization of finite clause structure in aber-clauses reported in a previous study. Delayed realization of finite clause structure was also reported for clauses containing the additive particle auch (‘also/too’) by other researchers. It has been attributed to the information-structural properties of auch-clauses. Following this approach, we investigated the information-structural properties of the aber-clauses documented in the longitudinal data of five monolingual children (age range: 1;11–2;10) from the first documented aber-production to the emergence of finite clause structure in aber-clauses. Information-structural complexity is measured in terms of number and quality of the information-structural patterns of contrastive information in the aber-clause and the explicitness of the contrast realization. Analyses reveal a change in preference from topic-including contrasts to non-topic-including ones, that is, comment-located contrasts as well as a change from explicit to implicit contrast realization. We argue that the delayed realization of finite clause structure in aber-clauses is caused by an initial concentration on the complex content relations raised by the requirement of information-structural alignment of at least two different constituents as well as the anticipating of an implicit proposition. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Linguistics Vanguard de Gruyter

Contrast relations in the early aber-clauses of German-speaking infants

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Publisher
De Gruyter
Copyright
©2018 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston
ISSN
2199-174X
eISSN
2199-174X
D.O.I.
10.1515/lingvan-2016-0102
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

AbstractThe paper focusses on the early production of aber- (‘but’-) clauses in German L1-acquisition. It aims to explain the delay in the realization of finite clause structure in aber-clauses reported in a previous study. Delayed realization of finite clause structure was also reported for clauses containing the additive particle auch (‘also/too’) by other researchers. It has been attributed to the information-structural properties of auch-clauses. Following this approach, we investigated the information-structural properties of the aber-clauses documented in the longitudinal data of five monolingual children (age range: 1;11–2;10) from the first documented aber-production to the emergence of finite clause structure in aber-clauses. Information-structural complexity is measured in terms of number and quality of the information-structural patterns of contrastive information in the aber-clause and the explicitness of the contrast realization. Analyses reveal a change in preference from topic-including contrasts to non-topic-including ones, that is, comment-located contrasts as well as a change from explicit to implicit contrast realization. We argue that the delayed realization of finite clause structure in aber-clauses is caused by an initial concentration on the complex content relations raised by the requirement of information-structural alignment of at least two different constituents as well as the anticipating of an implicit proposition.

Journal

Linguistics Vanguardde Gruyter

Published: Nov 3, 2017

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