Information Highlighting in Advanced Learner English
The syntax–pragmatics interface in second language acquisition
This book presents the first detailed and comprehensive study of information highlighting in advanced learner language, echoing the increasing interest in questions of near-native competence in SLA research and contributing to the description of advanced interlanguages. It examines the production and comprehension of specific means of information highlighting in English by native speakers and German learners of English as a foreign language, presenting triangulated experimental and learner corpus data as corroborating evidence. The study focuses on learners’ use of discourse-pragmatically motivated variations of the basic word order such as inversion, preposing, and <i>it</i>- and <i>wh</i>-clefts, an underexplored field in SLA research to date.The book also provides a critical re-assessment of the study of pragmatics within SLA. It has largely been neglected to date that L2 pragmatic knowledge includes more than the sociopragmatic and pragmalinguistic abilities for understanding and performing speech acts. Thus, the book argues for an extension of the scope of inquiry in interlanguage pragmatics beyond the cross-cultural investigation of speech acts. It also discusses pedagogical implications for foreign language teaching and will be of interest to applied linguists and SLA researchers, language teachers and curriculum designers.