Book: Romance-Germanic Bilingual Phonology
Chapter: Production in English Laterals by Early Sequential Spanish-English Bilinguals
This chapter examines the patterns of acquisition of the English laterals by early sequential Spanish-English bilinguals. Spanish /l/ is always ‘clear’, while Am. English /l/ shows degrees of ‘dark’, depending on the context. (Quilis et. al, 1979; Carter & Local, 2007). 30 participants, with average age of English acquisition 4:6 are included in the study. Productuions are acoustically analyzed.
Research questions include 1) Are productions of early sequential bilinguals different from those of monolinguals with respect to English laterals? 2) If so, are there contextual factors? and 3) Does age of leaning explain the different performances of individual subjects? Results support Flege’s (1995) ‘equivalence classification, and Major’s (2001) “Similarity Differential Hypothesis’ in that dissimilar phenomena are acquired at faster rates than similar phenomena.