Foreword

  • Andrej BEKEŠ

Abstract

I am glad to observe that in line with the original concept of ALA, papers chosen for publication in this issue are addressing a variety of problems pertinent to a multifaceted phenomenon such as language. There are five papers, two dealing with Japanese, one with Punjabi and two with Persian, employing multiple perspectives and methodologies.

The first paper, by Irena SRDANOVIĆ and Kumiko SAKODA, is concerned with Japanese as a second language. In it the authors present a learner's corpus (C-JAS) based analysis of learner’s production of adjectives. They illustrate the general trend in adjective acquisition on the example of the adjective takai (high), examining the correlation of learners' ability with semantic domains covered in their use of adjectives. Paper also proposes new methodology to be further tested on a new larger learner's corpus now being developed at the National Institute for Japanese Language and Linguistics.

The second paper, by LI Wenchao, is looking at Japanese from the historical perspective, focusing on verb compounds in Early Middle Japanese (ENJ). The author argues that verb compounds actually developed in EMJ, from a looser association of verbs in earlier stagers of Japanese. Through weakening, compounds develop in two directions, one where the first verb morphs into a prefix, and the other where the second verb is transmuting into a directional/resultative complement, a result in accordance with grammaticalization theory.

In the third paper, the authors, Barirah NAZIR, Umair AFTAB, and Ammara SAEED, are dealing passionately with the language shift away from Punjabi. The situation of Punjabi is very complex, being the second major language in Pakistan and also one of the major languages India. The authors are focusing their research on Sargodha region of Pakistan, arguing, based on analysis of questionnaires and interviews, that Punjabi indeed is experiencing language shift, due to the shifting perception of the social role of rival languages, Urdu, the national language, and English, the official language of Pakistan. This result is surprising, since Punjabi in India does not seem to be experiencing a similar shift towards Hindi and/or English.

The fourth paper, by the authors Mahla SAEDI, Fateme ALAVI, and Akram SHEKARIAN BEHZADI, is a psycholinguistic study of the rate and intelligibility of speech in hearing impaired Persian speaking pupils. Their findings confirm the expected lower performance of hearing impaired pupils as compared to normally hearing ones. The findings also show statistically significant difference between hearing impaired boys and girls, boys performing better in both speed and intelligibility. On the other hand, in the group of normal pupils, it is the girls that perform better than boys. It would be interesting to know what factors, most probably social, are responsible for such a difference.

The last paper, by Azadeh Sharifi MOGHADDAM and Farimah Farrahi MOGHADDAM also deals with Persian. While pointing out the lively cultural contacts between Iran and France since the 17 c. the authors are examining the semantic change undergone by French loanwords in Persian during the last 150 or so years. To explain and categorize the changes the authors propose an elaborate synchronic model of semantic change, able to encompass all of the observed changes.

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Published
2013-12-09
How to Cite
BEKEŠA. (2013). Foreword. Acta Linguistica Asiatica, 3(2), 5-6. https://doi.org/10.4312/ala.3.2.5-6
Section
Foreword