chapter  5
40 Pages

Clausal Word Order and Movement

This chapter examines whether Patty has acquired knowledge of the features that determine whether or not certain sentential elements move in English. It investigates verb raising, which has been connected in both the first and second language acquisition literature to knowledge of finiteness and subject-verb agreement. The spontaneous production data reported in Donna Lardiere are highly suggestive of a constraint prohibiting verb raising in Patty's grammatical representation of English. An early SLA example is found in a series of papers by White and colleagues, who observed that francophone learners of English, while ordering verbs correctly with respect to negation, nonetheless allow Subject-Verb-Adverb-Object word orders in which adverbs intervene between the thematic verb and the direct object. The chapter explains the acquisition of wh-movement in questions and relative clauses, respectively and provides some data on passive sentences. Lardiere examined Patty's data for any evidence of optional verb raising.