Bilingual first-language development: Major language takeover, threatened fraction language take-up Essay

Bilingualism: Language and Experience 12 (2), 2009, 213–237


2009 Cambridge College or university Press doi: 10. 1017/S1366728909004015

Bilingual first-language

development: Dominant

language takeover, threatened

group language take-up∗


V I L G I actually N I A C. M U E T L E R G AT H E R C O L At the



Bangor College or university, Wales

This kind of study explores the magnitude to which bilingual speakers in stable bilingual communities turn into fully bilingual in their two community different languages. Growing proof shows that in bilingual communities in which one particular language is extremely dominant, purchase of the major language may be quite unproblematic across sub-groups, while acquisition of the group language can be hampered below conditions of reduced suggestions. In Wales, children are encountered with both English language and Welsh from an early age, possibly in the home or perhaps at university, or both. The data reported here show that regardless of home vocabulary background, audio system develop equivalent, mature command of English, but that command of Welsh can be directly correlated with the level of type in Welsh in the home with school. Furthermore, maintenance of Welsh in adult life may be conditional on extended exposure to the language. The data have implications to get theories of bilingual obtain in stable versus zuzugler bilingual neighborhoods, for optimal conditions intended for bringing up bilingual children, and for theories of critical periods of buy.

This analyze explores the question of the level to which

early bilingual speakers in secure bilingual residential areas

become totally bilingual inside their two community languages.

This kind of study responds to facts that the time of

acquisition of a bilingual's two languages is related to

quantity of contact with each terminology. Growing facts

indicates that children with greater experience of each

terminology have the early on advantage in the acquisition of

that language, although that, as well, differences

throughout groups usually become neutralized as children grow

more mature and all organizations amass a level of insight needed to

get the structures in question (Oller and Eilers, 2002a; Gathercole, 2007c; Gathercole and Hoff, 2007). What is

unfamiliar, however , may be the extent to which this design

applies to almost all structures inside the language – i. elizabeth., whether

bilingual children gain a full control of ALL areas of

both of all their languages by simply adulthood. If, indeed, you will find

limits to acquisition beyond a certain critical period pertaining to

language expansion (e. g., Johnson and Newport, 1989),

this begs the question of whether or not there might be elements

of the dialect that are timed " from the map” in some


2. This operate was partially supported by the next grants, that we are incredibly grateful: Welsh Assembly Government grant (Gathercole & Thomas); Welsh Vocabulary Board give (Gathercole, Jones, Williams & Deuchar); ESRC R25037 (Ellis, Gathercole & Vihman); ESRC R000237882 (Gathercole). We as well wish to identify Margaret Deuchar, Eddie Williams, Nadine Laporte, Emma Barnes, Erica Reisig, and Canon Roberts for his or her collaboration on various strands of the study reported upon here.

The answer to this issue may count, at least in

portion, on the context of bilingualism (De Houwer, 1995;

Romaine, 1995; Vihman, 1998; Deuchar and Quay, 2000)

and the time of buy (Johnson and Newport,

1989; Hyltenstam, 2006). There is growing evidence that

in bilingual communities by which one terminology is very

major over the different, acquisition of the dominant

vocabulary may be quite unproblematic around sub-groups,

while acquisition of the minority terminology can be

affected under conditions of decreased input (Schlyter and

H˚ kansson, 1994; Allen, 2006; Meisel, 06\; Treffersa


Daller, Ozsoy and vehicle Hout, 2007). There has recently been

some recommendation that there could be " suppression” of the

L1 in bilinguals/L2 learners in certain immigrant situations

(Oller, Jarmulowicz, Gibson and Hoff, 2007)....

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