Event date:

IAS Invited Lecture Series: “Reassessing gradient variation in models of grammar and bilingualism”

We would like to invite you to an open lecture by Prof. Antonella Sorace (University of Edinburgh) on Reassessing gradient variation in models of grammar and bilingualism to be held online on 20th January 2022 at 5 pm.

This will be the fourth lecture of the IAS Invited Lecture Series in Bilingualism and Multilingualism organised by the Faculty of English and Bilingualism Matters@Poznań in 2021-22, as convened by prof. Magdalena Wrembel and prof. Anna Ewert.

Prof. Antonella Sorace
“Reassessing gradient variation in models of grammar and bilingualism”

Abstract: Recent research on child and adult multilingualism has focused on a range of interface conditions on syntactic realization. I will discuss two examples. First, pronouns and other referring expressions require efficient integration and updating of pragmatic and context-dependent information: these structures develop later in monolingual children, remain selectively variable in proficient second language speakers, and exhibit selective optionality in speakers experiencing native language attrition (Sorace 2011, 2016, 2020). Second, the selection of perfective auxiliaries avere/haben (‘have’) and essere/sein (‘be’) in Italian and German systematically varies along a gradient hierarchy defined by the aspectual type of the intransitive verb and the context in which the verb appears (Sorace 2000, 2015, Gregersen, Engdahl & Laanemets 2017): the use of auxiliaries with variable verbs, like the choice of pronominal forms, is sensitive to the cognitive capacity of individual speakers to integrate linguistic and non-linguistic information outside the verb itself, and presents similar patterns of selective optionality in adult bilingualism. I will argue that an account of these patterns needs an interdisciplinary approach that considers both language and general cognition, as well as their interaction.

Please register at: https://forms.office.com/r/dGuAyZ7x8c to receive the link to the online meeting.