Learning verbs of movement in a Foreign Language: Spanish students of English in a formal context
Keywords:Language learning, Motion events, Spanish, English, Second language, Lexicalization
Native speakers of different languages may conflate reality in different ways. One of the most illustrative examples of this idea is movement and the divergences in its lexicalization on the part of the native speakers of English and Spanish. The present study focuses on the lexicalization of motion events in the learners’ interlanguage. We compare the use of Path and Manner verbs in two groups of native speakers of Spanish studying English at elementary and advanced levels. The way movement was conflated by the advanced group was reasonably close to the English way, whereas the elementary group was still far from the English lexicalization of movement. These results support the language-based theories on cognition as they show that differences of L2 proficiency may have an influence in the way motion is lexicalized in the L2.
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