Interrelationships between Time and Space in English and French discourse: implications for second language acquisition

Abstract : This paper explores the expression of temporal boundaries in narrative discourse drawing on cartoon-elicited productions which narrate caused and/or voluntary motion events involving four types of paths. We hypothesise that the way speakers express temporal boundaries depends on the “framing” of their first language (Talmy 2000). We therefore examine productions by speakers of L1 French (V-framed language), L1 English (S-framed) and English learners of L2 French at three levels of proficiency. Productions may include a Setting section and a Main event. Findings show that each speaker group has its own mode of expressing temporal and spatial boundaries. The choice in L1 French depends on Path type, but not in L1 English. English learners of L2 French pattern more like L1 French speakers for verbal morphology, but their expression of space is nearly similar to their L1 English. The discussion highlights implications of this linguistic framing type for L2 acquisition.
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Annie-Claude Demagny. Interrelationships between Time and Space in English and French discourse: implications for second language acquisition. Langage, Interaction et Acquisition / Language, Interaction and Acquisition , John Benjamins Publishing Company 2015, 6 (2), pp.202-236. ⟨10.1075/lia.6.2.02dem⟩. ⟨halshs-01285306⟩

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