Well I Never!: Formulaic Language as a Pragmatic Resource in Child Entertainment Media

This study provides qualitative data on the potential for exposure to Situation-Bound Utterances (SBUs) in English language children’s cartoons. The SBUs are described according to their pragmatic context, and possibilities for pragmalinguistic inference going beyond the scope of traditional learning environments are discussed. The study also notes how those SBUs are dealt with in the Spanish and Catalan dubbed versions of the same cartoons. To achieve this analysis the children’s cartoons Peppa Pig and Charlie and Lola (two episodes of each) were selected. The original English versions were analysed for the occurrence of SBUs, and, after identifying certain sequences in which they are present, these same sequences were analysed in both the Spanish and Catalan dubbed versions in order to determine what happened to the SBUs. The study takes a multilingual approach to early pragmatic development in order to explore and highlight the considerable gains in pragmatic competence which can be taken advantage of through the use of authentic ‘out of school’ materials in contexts where three languages are in contact. Secondarily, the study comments on the tendency in certain European countries to dub original version audiovisual media, which it proposes is an impediment to multilingual development.
Author: 
Richard Nightingale
Year: 
2014
In: 
Gabryś-Barker, D. & Wojtaszek, A. (eds.) Studying Second Language Acquisition from a Qualitative Perspective
Editorial / Journal: 
Springer