The Department of French and Italian

Italian Placement Testing on 01/12 in HRH 2.106B @ 3:00pm

FIGSO Lecture Series - Gillian Sankoff

Gillian Sankoff - University of Pennsylvania

Fri, April 27, 2012 | HRC Prothro Theatre

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

FIGSO Lecture Series - Gillian Sankoff

Language and lifespan change in Montréal: the French of Francophones and Anglophones

Sociolinguistic research on Montréal French across three decades (1970s – 1990s) has identified a number of ongoing changes in this speech variety. Because the research has a panel component, in which a subsample of speakers has been recorded over a 24-year period, it has been possible to isolate three trajectories in speakers’ grammars during adult life. For some features we have found the stability expected of adults, but we have also identified some adults who have changed in the direction of innovations spearheaded by younger speakers in the community. Surprisingly, we have also discovered two cases of retrograde developments, in which speakers have retreated from an ongoing language change as they aged. 

To what extent are these findings applicable to second-dialect and second language acquisition? The existence of three distinct patterns in L1 lifespan change prompts a re-examination of the kinds and degrees of change that may occur “post-critical period” in general. Research carried out in the 1990s on Anglophone French in Montreal by Thibault, Sankoff and colleagues was designed to investigate how young adults from English-speaking L1 backgrounds adapted to local dialect features typically encountered post-childhood and outside of formal educational contexts. Findings on the L1 and L2 French of adolescents and adults from these two bodies of work are compared in an effort to shed light on the general question of how language change at the community level interacts with change in individual grammars across the lifespan.

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Tavola Italiana

Informal Italian conversation practice Fridays 3-4pm at the Texas Union's Cactus Café. Open to all students of Italian. Contact Antonella Olson for more information.

Café Français

Informal French conversation practice Thursdays in the HRH Lounge (2.118) from 3-4pm. Open to all students of French. Contact Nancy Guilloteau for more information.


Italian Placement Testing 

Antonella Olson will be administering placement exams on Friday, January 12th, at 3:00pm and Wednesday, January 24th, at 2:00pm. HRH 2.106B. If you are seeking to take an Italian Language Placement Test, please attend this session. Due to time constraints makeups are not guaranteed. 

Cineforum Italiano

Hosting Italian films with English subtitles every Thursdays at 8:00 pm in Mezes B0.306. 

  • Department of French and Italian

    University of Texas at Austin
    201 W 21st Street STOP B7600
    HRH 2.114A
    Austin, TX 78712-1800