Acquiring Linguistic Representations in the First Years
How do infants begin language acquisition? In this talk I will show that infants use prosody and functional items to break into early language. According to certain classic views, preverbal and early verbal infants lack grammatical knowledge. I will discuss empirical findings from my lab showing that infants begin to acquire aspects of the grammar from the first year of life, and that they demonstrate sophisticated syntactic representations during the second year of life.