The nativeness of Breton speakers and their invisibilisation

Abstract : I discuss the nativeness of heritage speakers of Breton in the twentieth century. I present a syntactic test designed for Breton that sets apart the natives and the late learners, for which Breton is a second language. Nativeness is revealed by a better tolerance to syntactic overload when sufficient linguistic stress is applied. Both heritage speakers of inherited Breton and early bilinguals whose linguistic input comes exclusively from school answer this test alike, which I take as a sign they are cognitively natives. The syntactic nativeness of children deprived of familial Breton input suggests there is much more young Breton natives among contemporary speakers than previously assumed. Taking stock of these results, I discuss the cultural invisibilisation of Breton native speakers. I compare their cultural treatment with the figure of the ghost.
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Submitted on : Thursday, August 22, 2019 - 9:40:24 PM
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Mélanie Jouitteau. The nativeness of Breton speakers and their invisibilisation. Studia Celtica Posnaniensia, In press. ⟨hal-02269519⟩

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