Acquisition en Français L1 des syntagmes interrogatifs prépositionnels

TitleAcquisition en Français L1 des syntagmes interrogatifs prépositionnels
Publication TypeManuscrit
Année de publication2017
AuthorsThiberge, Gabriel
Date de publication06/2017
InstitutionUniversité Paris-Diderot
KeywordsAcquisition, complexity, corpus study, movement, preposition, questions

In this thesis, I focus on the relationship between the preposition and its Wh- complement in French partial interrogatives, and on how much the production of such interrogatives is affected by prepositions. I investigate this in a quantitative as well as qualitative manner, by contrasting adult with early French data, both retrieved in spoken corpora such as CHILDES transcriptions.

If the fronting of the Wh- element in French questions is a movement from an underlying argument position, moving a Wh- phrase introduced by a preposition appear to be more costly than it is for a bare Wh- phrase. This applies even more strongly to children, who we already know encounter difficulties with Wh- movement in the early stages of their linguistic development.

Both French adults and children favor in situ constructions when using prepositional Wh- phrases, as compared to their use of bare Wh- phrases. Though similar in some aspects to that of bare Wh- phrases, the acquisition process for prepositional Wh- phrases also appears to be more complex: it is delayed, it does not follow a clear pattern, ‘try-out’ strategies are found among children productions, and in situ constructions are used even more.