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Bilingual and monolingual children prefer native-accented speakers

Title:

Bilingual and monolingual children prefer native-accented speakers

Souza, André L., Byers-Heinlein, Krista and Poulin-Dubois, Diane (2013) Bilingual and monolingual children prefer native-accented speakers. Frontiers in Psychology, 4 . ISSN 1664-1078

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00953

Abstract

Adults and young children prefer to affiliate with some individuals rather than others. Studies have shown that monolingual children show in-group biases for individuals who speak their native language without a foreign accent (Kinzler et al., 2007). Some studies have suggested that bilingual children are less influenced than monolinguals by language variety when attributing personality traits to different speakers (Anisfeld and Lambert, 1964), which could indicate that bilinguals have fewer in-group biases and perhaps greater social flexibility. However, no previous studies have compared monolingual and bilingual children's reactions to speakers with unfamiliar foreign accents. In the present study, we investigated the social preferences of 5-year-old English and French monolinguals and English-French bilinguals. Contrary to our predictions, both monolingual and bilingual preschoolers preferred to be friends with native-accented speakers over speakers who spoke their dominant language with an unfamiliar foreign accent. This result suggests that both monolingual and bilingual children have strong preferences for in-group members who use a familiar language variety, and that bilingualism does not lead to generalized social flexibility.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Psychology
Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Authors:Souza, André L. and Byers-Heinlein, Krista and Poulin-Dubois, Diane
Journal or Publication:Frontiers in Psychology
Date:23 December 2013
Funders:
  • Concordia Open Access Author Fund
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00953
Keywords:bilingualism, foreign-accented speech, social biases, children
ID Code:978248
Deposited By: DAVID MACAULAY
Deposited On:28 Jan 2014 19:44
Last Modified:18 Jan 2018 17:46
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