Verb Transfer in L2 Acquisition vs. Stage Model of Figure/Ground A Case Study with Evidence from Lithuanian and German
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Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznań, Poland
Verb Transfer in L2 Acquisition vs. Stage Model of Figure/GroundA Case Study with Evidence from Lithuanian and German
Previous studies of language errors have primarily focused on the structural analysis of surface similarities or formal-semantic differences involving misused lexemes, and have offered findings that have been implemented (to a varying extent) in applied linguistics. The present contribution aims to provide insights into the semantic analysis of verb transfer under the Cognitive Grammar approach. The paper explores and describes cognitive factors that play a role in verb transfer from L1 to L2 in a bilingual usage setting. The semantic analysis is based on the Cognitive Grammar methodology, including Langacker’s (1990) stage model: figure/ground, which is employed to reconstruct a particular construal that provides the cognitive basis of the misused verb. Identifying the compositional path of the transferred verb’s meaning leads to a contrastive analysis of various conceptualizations and arriving at a set of similarities and differences between the imagistic structures of the equivalent expressions in the languages concerned. The symmetry of the transferred form with its L1 archetype often provides evidence for the mental basis of lexical transfer. The applied methodological approach offers insights into the cognitive nature of L2 errors and may prove to be a valid contribution to language teaching methodology. The second part of the paper presents a case study, which provides empirical evidence for the author’s arguments. The study...
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