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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton April 28, 2015

Prosodic phrasing of relative clauses with two possible antecedents in Spanish: A comparison of Spanish native speakers and L1 Basque bilingual speakers

Irene de la Cruz-Pavía and Gorka Elordieta
From the journal Folia Linguistica

Abstract

The present production study investigates the prosodic phrasing characteristic of sentences containing a relative clause with two possible noun phrase antecedents [Noun Phrase 1 Noun Phrase 2 Relative Clause] in the variety of Spanish spoken in the Basque Country. It aims to establish the default prosodic phrasing of these structures, as well as whether differences are found in phrasing between native and non-native speakers. Additionally, it examines the effect on prosodic phrasing of constituent length and familiarity with the sentences (skimming the sentences prior to reading them aloud). To do that, the productions of 8 Spanish monolinguals, 8 first language (L1) Spanish/second language (L2) Basque bilinguals, and 8 L1Basque/L2Spanish bilinguals are examined. A default phrasing consisting of the prevalence of a prosodic break after NP2 ([NP1 NP2/RC]) is obtained, and differences are found between the prosodic contours of native and non-native speakers. Additionally, a constituent length effect is found, with a higher frequency of prosodic boundaries after NP2 as RC length increases, as predicted by Fodor’s Same Size Sister Constraint. Last, familiarity with the sentences was found to increase the frequency of occurrence of the default phrasing.

Acknowledgments

We wish to thank Laurel Fais, Itziar Laka, Adam Zawiszewski, and two anonymous reviewers for their comments on different versions of this paper. We are also grateful to Edurne Petrirena and all the participants in the experiment. We extend our thanks to the Basque Government (BFI07.253 and IT769–13), the University of the Basque Country UPV/EHU (UFI11/14), the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science (Consolider-Ingenio CSD 2007–00012), and the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (FFI2012-38064-C02-01) for financial aid. This research was supported by a Marie Curie International Outgoing Fellowship within the EU Seventh Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development (2007–2013) under REA grant agreement no. [624972] awarded to the first author.

Appendix: Materials

Block 1: 3- to 4-syllable long RCs

  1. 1.

    María besó al amigo del niño que reía.

  2. 2.

    Alguien llevó al amigo del niño que lloraba.

  3. 3.

    Nadie habló al amigo del gamberro que vino.

  4. 4.

    Un hombre saludó al marido de la ganadora que lloró.

  5. 5.

    La explosión hirió a la hermana de la abogada que leía.

  6. 6.

    Mi jefe despidió a la amiga de la madrileña que bailaba.

  7. 7.

    Manuel amaba a la amiga del librero que emigró.

  8. 8.

    Mi amiga llamó al sobrino del hombre que navegó.

  9. 9.

    Mi madre invitó a la sobrina de la bailarina que bebía.

  10. 10.

    Mi hermana consoló a la hermana de la niña que miraba.

  11. 11.

    Hacienda investigó al hermano del senador que se mudó.

  12. 12.

    Nadie felicitó a la nuera del anciano que llegaba.

Block 2: 6- to 7-syllable long RCs

  1. 1.

    Elena vio al amigo del mendigo que era muy nervioso.

  2. 2.

    El profesor aprobó al amigo del noruego que era simpático.

  3. 3.

    Un ladrón robó al mayordomo del señor que llegaba a casa.

  4. 4.

    Mi madre saludó al amigo del señor que vino desde Suecia.

  5. 5.

    El hombre despidió al hermano del marinero que hablaba portugués.

  6. 6.

    Mi padre saludó a la hermana de la gallega que era muy modesta.

  7. 7.

    Ese ladrón engañó al amigo del barbero que vino desde Madrid.

  8. 8.

    El vecino saludó a la hermana del marinero que enfermaba mucho.

  9. 9.

    Nadie habló a la hermana de la profesora que leyó la novela.

  10. 10.

    La policía detuvo a la sobrina de la niñera que dio muchos problemas.

  11. 11.

    La secretaria llamó al sobrino del obrero que cumplió condena.

  12. 12.

    El periodista siguió al novio de la señora que ganó el concurso.

Block 3: 9- to 11-syllable long RCs

  1. 1.

    El ladrón robó al mayordomo del noble que llevaba un traje rojo nuevo.

  2. 2.

    María escribió al amigo del mesonero que de niño adoraba la pasta.

  3. 3.

    Pedro insultó a la novia del librero que bebía demasiado alcohol.

  4. 4.

    La mujer ayudó al manager del modelo que volaba a menudo a Madrid.

  5. 5.

    Mi hermana saludó al amigo del niño que ayudaba a poner la mesa.

  6. 6.

    El juez condenó al hermano del bailarín que vivió varios años en Francia.

  7. 7.

    Mi amigo saludó a la enfermera de la señora que bailaba todos los domingos.

  8. 8.

    Nadie saludaba al hermano del barbero que engañó a todos sus amigos.

  9. 9.

    El conductor atropelló al hermano del abogado que bebía demasiado vino.

  10. 10.

    Mi hermano llamó a la amiga de la niña que adoraba la hierba verde.

  11. 11.

    Ella amaba al hermano del vendedor que lideraba nuestro grupo.

  12. 12.

    Mi madre se lo regaló al alumno del hombre que vestía de marrón oscuro.

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Received: 2014-6-17
Revised: 2013-6-15
Revised: 2014-4-28
Accepted: 2014-11-2
Published Online: 2015-4-28
Published in Print: 2015-5-1

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