Acquisition de la causativité chez des enfants français et bulgares âgés de 3 à 6 ans : complexité syntaxique ou complexité sémantique ?

Abstract : The present paper investigates the acquisition of one basic cognitive concept – the causativity. Using a cross-linguistic study on French and Bulgarian, we seek to understand which specificity of the causativity makes it difficult to acquire: its semantics or its morphosyntactic realization in languages. Our study includes 209 participants, among them 113 French native speakers (71 children and 42 adults) and 96 Bulgarian native speakers (56 children and 40 adults). Children are divided into three age groups (3-4, 4-5 and 5-6 years of age). They are filmed in the kindergarten during two experimental tasks – production (which consists in watching animated cartoons with causative actions) and comprehension (an act-out task where participants are asked to simulate causative actions using plastic figurines). Adults are recorded at work during the production task only. Our data reveal that complex semantic representation of the causativity cannot really explain the difficulty for children to acquire this cognitive concept. Others factors among which the multiplicity of the causative mechanisms, their morphosyntactic complexity (lexical units, relatively regular and clear morphological devices, complex predicates and periphrastic constructions), as well as their productivity (or input frequency) play a crucial role in the developmental process.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-01969728
Contributor : Jean-Pierre Chevrot <>
Submitted on : Friday, January 4, 2019 - 2:45:56 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, June 11, 2019 - 9:50:03 AM

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Yanka Bezinska, Iva Novakova, Jean-Pierre Chevrot. Acquisition de la causativité chez des enfants français et bulgares âgés de 3 à 6 ans : complexité syntaxique ou complexité sémantique ?. CogniTextes, Association française de linguistique cognitive, 2018, 17, ⟨http://journals.openedition.org/cognitextes/938⟩. ⟨10.4000/cognitextes.938⟩. ⟨hal-01969728⟩

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