The Phonetic and Morphosyntactic Dimensions of Grammatical Gender in Spanish Heritage Language

Pérez-Leroux, A. T., López, Y. Á., Barreto, M., Cuza, A., Marinescu, I., Yang, J., & Colantoni, L.

Previous studies disagree as to whether heritage bilinguals demonstrate loss of knowledge of Spanish grammatical gender. As phonetic variability is known to affect the acquisition of certain grammatical markers, we examine whether bilinguals’ gender difficulties relate to bilingual contact-induced phonetic variability, namely, reduction in the inventory of word-final unstressed vowels.

Heritage Language Journal, 20(1), 1-37 –  June 2023. Full Article.

A Phonetic Account of Spanish-English Bilinguals’ Divergence with Agreement

Laura Colantoni, Ruth Martinez, Natalia Mazzaro, Ana T. Pérez-Leroux and Natalia Rinaldi.

Does bilingual language influence in the domain of phonetics impact the morphosyntactic domain? Spanish gender is encoded by word-final, unstressed vowels (/a e o/), which may diphthongize in word-boundary vowel sequences.  Full Article.