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Effects of first and second language on segmentation of non-native speech*

  • ADRIANA HANULÍKOVÁ (a1), HOLGER MITTERER (a1) and JAMES M. MCQUEEN (a2)

Abstract

Do Slovak–German bilinguals apply native Slovak phonological and lexical knowledge when segmenting German speech? When Slovaks listen to their native language, segmentation is impaired when fixed-stress cues are absent (Hanulíková, McQueen & Mitterer, 2010), and, following the Possible-Word Constraint (PWC; Norris, McQueen, Cutler & Butterfield, 1997), lexical candidates are disfavored if segmentation leads to vowelless residues, unless those residues are existing Slovak words. In the present study, fixed-stress cues on German target words were again absent. Nevertheless, in support of the PWC, both German and Slovak listeners recognized German words (e.g., Rose “rose”) faster in syllable contexts (suckrose) than in single-consonant contexts (krose, trose). But only the Slovak listeners recognized, for example, Rose faster in krose than in trose (k is a Slovak word, t is not). It appears that non-native listeners can suppress native stress segmentation procedures, but that they suffer from prevailing interference from native lexical knowledge.

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Copyright

Corresponding author

Address for correspondence: Adriana Hanulíková, Basque Center on Cognition, Brain and Language, Paseo Mikeletegi 69, 20009 Donostia, Spain a.hanulikova@bcbl.eu

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This research was supported by a doctoral stipend from the Konrad Adenauer Foundation to Adriana Hanulíková and by the NWO SPINOZA grant awarded to Anne Cutler. We would like to thank Prof. Mária Vajíčková for providing testing facilities in Bratislava, and Olinka Blauová for her help in finding Slovaks living in Berlin. We thank Katja Kühn for lending her voice to our materials. The last-listed author is a member of the Behavioural Science Institute and the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Centre for Cognition, both at the Radboud University Nijmegen.

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References

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Effects of first and second language on segmentation of non-native speech*

  • ADRIANA HANULÍKOVÁ (a1), HOLGER MITTERER (a1) and JAMES M. MCQUEEN (a2)

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