Presentation

When French Becomes Tonal: Prosodic Transfer From L1 Cantonese and L2 English

Authors
  • Jackson L. Lee (University of Chicago)
  • Stephen Matthews (University of Hong Kong)

Abstract

What happens when native speakers of a tone language learn a non-tone language? This paper describes and accounts for L3 French prosody by L1 Hong Kong Cantonese speakers competent in English as L2. The general observed pattern in L3 French prosody is that syllables of French content words (nouns, verbs, adjectives, and so forth) all bear the Cantonese high level tone, whereas syllables of French function words (prepositions, determiners, etc.) have the Cantonese low level tone. This is analyzed as a case of interlanguage transfer, where L1 Cantonese contributes to the observed prosodic features in L3 French via L2 English interlanguage. Beyond the empirical contribution, this paper remarks on pedagogical aspects of second and third language acquisition.

How to Cite:

Lee, J. L. & Matthews, S., (2014) “When French Becomes Tonal: Prosodic Transfer From L1 Cantonese and L2 English”, Pronunciation in Second Language Learning and Teaching Proceedings 6(1).

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Published on
31 Dec 2014
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