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Children’s English in Singapore: Acquisition, Properties, and Use

1st Edition

By Sarah Buschfeld

Combining the World Englishes framework with First Language Acquisition methodology, this book investigates children’s acquisition of L1 English in the context of multilingual Singapore, one of the traditional Kachruvian Outer Circle or ESL countries.

The book investigates language choice, use, and dominance in Singaporean families, identifies common linguistic characteristics of L1 Singapore English, as well as the acquisitional route that Singaporean children take. It discusses characteristics at the different levels of language organization, i.e., phonological, morphosyntactic, lexical, and pragmatic features, drawing on a variety of systematically elicited data and Praat-based acoustic analyses. Comparing the results to similar data obtained from children living in England (both mono- and bi-/multilingual), the book also sheds light on how the acquisitional steps taken by Singaporean children differ from or are similar to traditional native speakers of English and children from immigrant families in England.


Table of Contents

1. Introduction

2. Singapore English: Evolution, Sociolinguistic Background, and Structural Characteristics

3. Acquiring English as a First Language: Setting the Scene

4. Investigating the Acquisition of L1 Singapore English: Setting the Methodological Scene

5. L1 Singapore English: Acquisitional Background, Usage Domains, and Features

6. The Acquisition of Subject Pronouns

7. The Acquisition of Past Tense Marking

8. The Acquisition of Vowel Sounds

9. Discussion

10. Conclusions


ISBN 9781032082028

Published August 2, 2021 by Routledge

316 Pages 23 Color & 71 B/W Illustrations



Sarah Buschfeld is Chair of English Linguistics (Multilingualism) at the Technical University of Dortmund.


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