Date: Tue, 15 Mar 1994 21:45:39 -0700 From: Rudy Troike Subject: Re: Conscious Learning of Accent In response to Dennis Preston's query re interaction of L2 and L3 etc, I have never seen anything formal published on it, though it is a fascinating issue in regard to the question of neural storage and access. The first and only formal comment on it I heard was by the British linguist W. Stannard Allen who gave a lecture in Istanbul in 1960 (reported to me), in which he speculated that some people had two language "channels", one for L1 and the other for L2...Ln. I've used this for years in lectures on bilingualism, with anecdotes from my own and others' experiences. Allen qualified his comment by indicating that the "Channel 2" applied to languages that the speaker did not know well. I thought I had commented on the phenomenon on ADS-L sometime back when discussing code-switching, but maybe I had just done it in e-mailing Don Lance. I seem to have 3 channels, one for English, one for Spanish, and one for Lx, where the latter involves any language I don't know well. When I lived in Turkey and traveled to Germany for summer vacation, I used to spend the time going through Yugoslavia suppressing my Turkish and reviving my German (both equally poor), and the reverse on the way back. Once, having arrived in Austria, I encountered a man who saw my Turkish license plates and asked in Turkish how long it had taken to get there; though I understood his question perfectly, I could only answer in German. Years later, when I started to study Chinese [I always recommend that anyone involved with L2 teaching should go through the process of learning another language every 5 years or so, to remember what it is like to be a student again], I was the only person in the class who produced sentences in SOV order (Turkish is SOV, but Chinese, like English, is predominantly SVO, so there should have been no interference). When I took Korean lessons 5 years ago (it's time to start another one -- the next will be ASL), I mainly had lexical interference from Chinese, but that was because of the large number of Chinese loans, most of which are pronounced markedly differently in Korean. I can't claim to have achieved any real fluency in Korean, unfortunately. Anybody have any more anecdotes? --Rudy Troike (rtroike[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]