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Zeitschrift für Angewandte Linguistik

Managing Editor: Gerwinski, Jan / Heller, Vivien / Meer, Dorothee / Morek , Miriam / Reif, Monika

SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) 2017: 0.102

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Einige Aspekte zum Erwerb des Genus durch Kinder mit türkischer und italienischer Erstsprache

Katharina Turgay
Published Online: 2011-01-28 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/zfal.2010.007


In this paper, I will examine several aspects of second language acquisition of grammatical gender in German. Gender is an inherent feature of nouns which is not shown by the noun alone, but is only overtly marked at various other expressions, for example, articles, adjectives, or coreferential pronouns, which have to agree in gender with the noun. There are two challenges for the learner: even if there are some patterns, gender is a mostly arbitrary feature, and its morphological expression is closely connected with case marking. In order to examine how children in second language acquisition acquire the German gender system, data collected from a study conducted with children whose first languages are Turkish or Italian is analysed. The study shows that after case, gender is the second most difficult grammatical category for children to acquire in second language acquisition. This holds also for first language acquisition as a control group shows. It will be shown that the Italian speakers perform slightly better than the Turkish speakers, whose language does not have grammatical gender. For the Italian speakers, the neutral gender, which is absent in their first language, is the most difficult to acquire.

About the article

Published Online: 2011-01-28

Published in Print: 2010-12-01

Citation Information: Zeitschrift für angewandte Linguistik, Volume 2010, Issue 53, Pages 1–29, ISSN (Online) 2190-0191, ISSN (Print) 1433-9889, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/zfal.2010.007.

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