[PS-3.44] Language Interaction in Bilingualism: A Study of Brazilian Portuguese-English Bilinguals' Performance with Passive Constructions

Guimarães, M. . & de Souza, R.

Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais

An important question concerning bilinguals' knowledge of language is the extent to which the different languages are stored in a single representational repertoire, i.e.: if bilingualism can be regarded as multiple grammars (Amaral & Roeper, 2014). This study investigated this question through an examination of differences in distributional properties of passive constructions in Brazilian Portuguese (BP) and in English, and its impact on L1 production and L1 acceptability by high-proficiency L2 BP-English bilinguals and BP monolinguals. We report four sub-investigations: an analysis of spoken corpora, an acceptability judgment (data: scores and RTs), and two sentence elicitation tasks, written and oral. The corpus investigation confirmed the distributional difference of passives, revealing a significantly higher frequency in English than in BP (p < .000). The elicitation task revealed that bilinguals produced more passives than monolinguals in the oral task only (p = .017). However, the two groups showed similar judgments of passives (p = .139), regarding them as grammatical as actives (p = .016, r = .12 for bilinguals; p = .001, r = .17 for monolinguals). Our results show that bilinguals' language interactions are sensitive to task, so they should be regarded with caution as evidence of broadly unified linguistic representations.