"Understanding what you've never learned?" - Chances and limitations of spontaneous auditive transfer between Slavic languages

Christof Heinz

Publication: Working/Discussion PaperWU Working Paper

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This paper is dedicated to the investigation of receptive transfer with a special focus on the comprehension of spoken utterances in nonfamiliar Slavic languages. It investigates the possibility of applying the concept of passive multilingualism to the field of Slavic languages. It is often assumed that closely related languages provide ideal conditions for mutual intelligibility. By means of positive transfer from a previously known language of the group, one can achieve a certain degree of passive knowledge in related languages, even if these have never been learned consciously. In this paper, however, it will be shown that spontaneous intercomprehensibility of spoken utterances within the group of Slavic languages is rather restricted. After a short outline of the peculiarities of receptive and auditive transfer phenomena, as opposed to productive and written transfer, the paper provides empirical evidence for the failure of comprehension at different stages of the perception process.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationVienna
PublisherDepartment für Fremdsprachliche Wirtschaftskommunikation, WU Vienna University of Economics and Business
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Publication series

SeriesWU Online Papers in International Business Communication / Series One: Intercultural Communication and Language Learning

WU Working Paper Series

  • WU Online Papers in International Business Communication / Series One Intercultural Communication and Language Learning

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