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date: 30 November 2022

Acquisition of L1 Phonology in the Romance Languageslocked

Acquisition of L1 Phonology in the Romance Languageslocked

  • Yvan Rose, Yvan RoseDepartment of Linguistics, Memorial University
  • Laetitia AlmeidaLaetitia AlmeidaFaculty of Humanities​, University of Lisbon
  •  and Maria João FreitasMaria João FreitasFaculty of Humanities, University of Lisbon

Summary

The field of study on the acquisition of phonological productive abilities by first-language learners in the Romance languages has been largely focused on three main languages: French, Portuguese, and Spanish, including various dialects of these languages spoken in Europe as well as in the Americas. In this article, we provide a comparative survey of this literature, with an emphasis on representational phonology. We also include in our discussion observations from the development of Catalan and Italian, and mention areas where these languages, as well as Romanian, another major Romance language, would provide welcome additions to our cross-linguistic comparisons. Together, the various studies we summarize reveal intricate patterns of development, in particular concerning the acquisition of consonants across different positions within the syllable, the word, and in relation to stress, documented from both monolingual and bilingual first-language learners can be found. The patterns observed across the different languages and dialects can generally be traced to formal properties of phone distributions, as entailed by mainstream theories of phonological representation, with variations also predicted by more functional aspects of speech, including phonetic factors and usage frequency. These results call for further empirical studies of phonological development, in particular concerning Romanian, in addition to Catalan and Italian, whose phonological and phonetic properties offer compelling grounds for the formulation and testing of models of phonology and phonological development.

Subjects

  • Linguistic Theories
  • Phonetics/Phonology

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