Peal and Lambert’s Legacy:. The Canadian Breakthrough in Bilingual Research. Amelia Mareva 5th International Conference New Bulgarian University of Central European Canadianists
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The Canadian Breakthrough
in Bilingual Research
Amelia Mareva 5th International ConferenceNew Bulgarian Universityof Central European Canadianists
If it were possible for a child to live in two languages, at once equally well, so much the worse. His intellectual and spiritual growth would not thereby be doubled, but halved (Laurie 1893: 18)
A bilingual child is
[…] a youngster whose wider experiences in two cultures have given him advantages which a monolingual does not enjoy. Intellectually his experience with two language systems seems to have left him with a mental flexibility, a superiority in concept formation, a more diversified set of mental abilities […] There is no question about the fact that he is superior intellectually. […] In contrast, a monolingual appears to have a more unitary structure of intelligence which he must use for all types of intellectual tasks (Peal and Lambert 1962:20)
The twentieth century belongs to Canada (Wilfrid Laurier, PM, 1904)
W. Lambert – ‘father of research on bilingualism’
Subjects: number, age, gender, class, proficiency
Two groups of 110 ten-year old fourth-graders from six middle-class French schools in Montreal with a gender ration of six boys to four girls: ‘balanced’ French-English bilinguals and French monolinguals
Testing instruments: verbal and non-verbal IQ tests language tasks and self-rating
Results:Bilingualsscored higher than monolinguals on15 out of 18measures; no significant difference on the remaining three measures.
Research after 1962 has tended to move away from the “monistic” notion of IQ to the “pluralistic” notion of a multi-component view of intelligence and cognition’ (Baker 1988: 20)
Bilinguals typically acquire experience in switching from one language to another, possibly trying to solve a problem while thinking in one language, and then when blocked, switching to the other. This habit, if it were developed, could help them in their performance on tests requiring symbolic reorganization since they demand a readiness to drop one hypothesis or concept and try another. (Peal and Lambert 1962:14)
Lambert 1972, 1976: first neurophysiological studies; social psychology of language
Liedtke and Nielson 1968, Bain 1974: confirm the findings in other parts of Canada
Ianco-Worrall 1972: the relationship between object-naming ability and bilingualism
Ben-Zeev 1977: bilingual’s superiority in conceptualizing linguistic rules
Cummins: 1976, 1978: ‘threshold’ level of competence; the interdependence hypothesis
Duncan and De Avila 1979: positive correlation between linguistic proficiency and bilingualism
Diaz 1983, Gardner 1983 Cummins 1984, Mclaughlin 1984, Bain and Yu 1989
1989 The McGill Conference in Honour of Wallace E. Lambert
Present day: Bialystok 2001, Baker 2001, Cummins 2001
Mid-1960s - Lambert and Tucker pioneered the development of Canada’s first second language immersion programme – the “Canadian model of bilingual education” (innovative programme in which the French language was used as a medium of instruction for elementary school students whose home language was English)
Baker, Colin and Anne Sienkewicz, (2000). The Care and Education of Young Bilinguals.Multilingual Matters.
Bhatia, Tej K. and Ritchie, William C, (2004).Handbook of Bilingualism. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing.
Bialystok, Ellen, ( 2001)Bilingualism in Development: Language, Literacy and Cognition, CUP.
Crystal, David, (2000)Language Death. CUP.
Cummins, Jim, (1976). The Influence of Bilingualism on Cognitive Growth: A Synthesis of Research Findings and Explanatory Hypothesis. Working Papers on Bilingualism, 9, 1-43
Graddol, David,(2006).English Next, British Council, UK, http://www.britishcouncil.org/files/documents/learning-research-english-next.pdf
Hakuta, Kenji, (1986)The Mirror of Language: The Debate on Bilingualism. New York: Basic Books.
Hakuta, Kenji, Bernardo M. Ferdman and Rafael M. Diaz, (1987). Bilingualism and cognitive development: Three perspectives. In S. Rosenberg (Ed.), Advances in applied psycholinguistics, vol. II: Reading, writing and language learning, 284-319. CUP.
Ianco-Worrall Anita D., (1972). Bilingualism and cognitive development. Child Development, 43, 1390-1400
Laurie, S. S., (1893).Lectures on Language and Linguistic Method in the School. University of Edinburgh. http://www.archive.org/texts/flipbook/flippy.php?id=languagelinguist00laur
Peal, Elizabeth and Lambert, Wallace, (1962). The Relation of Bilingualism to Intelligence, Psychological Monographs, 76, 1–23.
Reynolds, Allan, (1991). Bilingualism, Multuculturalism and Second Language Learning: The McGill Conference in Honour of Wallace E. Lambert (ed) Allan G. Reynolds, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Romaine, Suzanne, (1995). Bilingualism, Blackwell Publishing.
Weinreich, Uriel,(1953).Languages in Contact: Findings and Problems. New York : Linguistic CircleList of selected references