Social Interaction, Social Context, and Language: Essays in Honor of Susan Ervin-Tripp

By Dan Isaac Slobin; Julie Gerhardt et al. | Go to book overview

9
WHAT INFLUENCES CHILDREN'S PATTERNING OF FORMS AND FUNCTIONS IN EARLY CHILD LANGUAGE?

Nancy Budwig1
Clark University

Over the past years, there has been a growing number of studies demonstrating that children's acquisition of various aspects of linguistic structure are related to aspects of the interactional and discursive contexts (see Berman & Slobin, 1994; Budwig, 1993, 1995; Ervin-Tripp, 1977, 1989, 1993; Slobin, 1985). Children of a variety of age groups, acquiring different sorts of languages, have been noted to link the use of particular linguistic forms with clusters of semantic, pragmatic, and discursive notions. In this chapter, I attempt to go beyond the claim that children link particular linguistic devices with specific semantic and pragmatic notions, and examine the question of the basis for such linkages. Although there have been many illustrations that grammar and discourse are linked in important ways in children's early linguistic productions, there has been little attention to the study of the sources of such systematizations.

Elsewhere (see Budwig, 1993, 1995) I have argued that until fairly recently the issue of sources of form-function pairings has received little empirical investigation within functionalist approaches to child language. I have noted that a gradual shift in empirical studies has involved moving from a discussion of how the domain of language ought to be defined towards a trend to chart out various courses of development en route to adultlike usage (see Budwig, 1993). Many functionalists seem to hold some more or less implicit assumptions that what the children are doing with particular forms is "child-like." The children's use is said to be special or "deviate" from the target language they are acquiring, to the extent that adult speakers are assumed to use forms in a more decontextual way (see for instance, Bamberg, Budwig, & Kaplan, 1991; Bloom, 1991; Tomasello, 1992). Other functionalists have implicitly or explicitly assumed that what children are doing is very much like what adults are doing with forms (see for instance Van Valin, 1991)

____________________
1
Portions of this paper were first presented at the American Association for Applied Linguistics, Seattle, Washington, 1992. Angela Wiley and Heather Quick played a central role in coding and analyzing some of the material reviewed in this chapter. In addition, I would like to thank the volume editors for helpful commentary on an earlier draft of this manuscript.

-143-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Social Interaction, Social Context, and Language: Essays in Honor of Susan Ervin-Tripp
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 655

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.