The Acquisition of Aspect and Modality

Ayhan Aksu-Koç’s empirical research on Turkish children’s acquisition of the past tense forms the basis for this original and important contribution to the current debate among psycholinguistics on the interrelationship between language and cognitive development. Turkish, in its grammar, makes a clear distinction between direct and indirect experiencing, separating personal observation of processes from both inference and narrative. This distinction thus provides an ideal means by which linguistic and nonlinguistic conceptual development can be observed. Dr Aksu-Koç has exploited this to full advantage in her broadly based longitudinal and cross-sectional study, conducted across a wide age range. The data are meticulously analyzed, and the theoretical implications for a neo-Piagetian paradigm are carefully considered.


List of figures; List of tables; Acknowledgements; Symbols and abbreviations; Part I. Tense, Aspect and Modality in Acquisition: 1. Introduction; 2. Tense, aspect and modality; 3. Theoretical and empirical research on the development of temporal reference; Part II. Development of Past Reference in Turkish: From ‘Perfect’ Aspect to ‘Evidential’ Modality: 4. The empirical study: rationale and hypotheses; 5. Longitudinal study of early inflectional development; 6. Experimental study of the production of the pasts of direct vs. indirect experience; 7. Experimental study of the comprehension and metalinguistic awareness of the pasts of direct vs. indirect experience; 8. Production and comprehension of the quotation function; Part III. Conclusions and General Implications: 9. Conclusion; Appendix; Notes; Bibliography; Indexes.