Volume 12, Issue 5
  • ISSN 1879-9264
  • E-ISSN: 1879-9272
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Second language (L2) learners are known to have difficulty producing inflection in obligatory contexts reliably. According to the Prosodic Transfer Hypothesis (PTH), the prosodic organisation of L2 inflection is constrained by the inventory of representations available in the L1. At the same time, this hypothesis does not explicitly limit how freely prosodic representations can be transferred, so that transfer across constructions within the same domain (e.g., verbal domain: L1 tense → L2 agreement) and across domains (e.g., verbal domain: L1 tense → nominal domain: L2 plurals) are both possible in principle. The goal of this study was to determine if the current formulation of the PTH is valid, or must be reined in to exclude transfer across domains in particular. Forty-four Korean learners of English did a spoken sentence-construction task in which they had to produce subject-verb agreement and regular plural inflection. Bayesian hierarchical regression was used to analyse the results. By examining asymmetries in the suppliance of short- vs. long-stemmed inflection, we show that there are no grounds for attaching any stipulations to the PTH along the above lines, as prosodic representations are transferrable not only across constructions but also across domains.


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