The studies in this collection address a topic that has recently become the focus of considerable interest in second language acquisition (SLA) research: the acquisition of articles. Languages appear to vary in whether they have articles (English, German, Norwegian do, but Chinese, Japanese, Russian do not). Languages that have articles also appear to divide into those that realise definiteness (e.g. English) and those that realise specificity (e.g. Samoan). When speakers of one type of language learn an L2 of a different type, issues of central concern to SLA research arise: the nature of L1 influence, the time course of development, ultimate attainment, the relationship between performance and competence, and the role of Universal Grammar. These issues are considered in nine studies, written by researchers whose work is at the forefront of enquiry, that offer new data, new perspectives and new insights into the way L2 speakers acquire articles.
1. List of editors and contributors; 2. Acknowledgments; 3. Introduction: The interest of article acquisition for theories of SLA (by Garcia Mayo, Maria del Pilar); 4. Part I. Article choice, fluctuation and L1 transfer in the acquisition of articles by L2 speakers; 5. Article choice in L2 English by Spanish speakers: Evidence for full transfer (by Garcia Mayo, Maria del Pilar); 6. L2 English article production by Arabic and French speakers (by Sarko, Ghisseh); 7. Questioning the validity of the Article Choice Parameter and the Fluctuation Hypothesis: Evidence from L2 English article use by L1 Polish and L1 Mandarin Chinese speakers (by Tryzna, Marta); 8. The processing role of the Article Choice Parameter: Evidence from L2 learners of English. (by Kim, Lucy Kyoungsook); 9. Accounting for patterns of article omissions and substitutions in second language production (by Trenkic, Danijela); 10. Part II. Further issues in the representation and use of articles by L2 speakers; 11. Article use and generic reference: Parallels between L1- and L2-acquisition (by Ionin, Tania); 12. Variability in L2 acquisition of Norwegian DPs: An evaluation of some current SLA models (by Jin, Fufen); 13. Articles in Turkish/English interlanguage revisited: Implications of vowel harmony (by Goad, Heather); 14. Article choice and article omission in the L3 German of native speakers of Japanese with L2 English (by Jaensch, Carol); 15. Author index; 16. Language index; 17. Term index