The significance of age and place of residence in the positional distribution of discourse <i>like</i> in L2 speech

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This chapter investigates the use of discourse markers in L2 Irish English, specifically like by Polish people, assuming that the use of discourse markers is an indicator of integration. Quantitative and qualitative approaches are used to analyse the corpus of speech, focusing in particular on the positional distribution of like and the impact of age and place of residence. Results show that the L2 speakers use discourse like in patterns which correspond to those attested for L1 Irish English. Place of residence was a significant factor, with rural and urban speakers following rural and urban L1 patterns respectively. However, the younger speakers tended to favour urban (and global) clause-medial like over clause-marginal like, the more traditional pattern for Irish English. The young L2 speakers appear to be participating in the global change in like patterns.


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