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Language and its Effects

Proceedings from the 31st International Conference of the Croatian Applied Linguistics Society

Edited By Marija Brala Vukanović and Anita Memišević

The effects of language are numerous. Some are known and have been described, other effects are intuitive and are still waiting to be understood, explained and predicted, while – possibly – there might be more effects that we are still unaware of. The book brings together 16 contributions organized into two main sections: The first one relates to the issue of the effects of language in the FL classroom. The second one can, broadly speaking, be subsumed under the heading of sociolinguistics, given that it brings together a number of papers exploring the effects of language on society and/or on the individual. The answers to the questions have been provided by linguists – theoreticians and practitioners - from multiple perspectives. Thus, the conclusions and invitations for further research put forth in the papers collected in this book, should be of use to anyone with an interest in the effects of language, from cognitive scientists to FL teachers.

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Italian speakers learning Croatian as L2: Accents (Ivančica Banković-Mandić / Vesna Deželjin)


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Ivančica Banković-Mandić & Vesna Deželjin

University of Zagreb

Italian speakers learning Croatian as L2: Accents

Abstract: The influence of one’s mother tongue in learning a foreign language is evident at all levels. The most enduring and prominent phenomenon in L1 transfer is the transfer of sounds, something which foreigners learning Croatian L2 usually point out. This paper focusses on deviations in the pronunciation of Croatian made by Italian-speaking students who attend the course Croatian as L2 and FL at Croaticum Centre of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb during their stay in Zagreb through the Erasmus Programme.

The analysis shows that the most frequent deviations from the standard pronunciation occur in two situations: (a) in polysyllabic words whose first syllable should be stressed in standard Croatian and (b) in certain verbs whose stressed syllable changes according to the word’s form. These results indicate that the subjects perceived the Zagreb accentual system as a familiar one and close to their mother tongue so that the tendency to stress the pen-ultimate syllable may prove the possibility of interference with the Italian accentual system.

Keywords: accents, Italian language L1, Croatian language L2

1 Introduction

The influence of L1 is almost always present at all language levels. Signals of interference, however, are most prominent at the phonological level, because they are a consequence of the restructuring...

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