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"This book reviews recent research on the second language acquisition of meaning with a view of establishing whether there is a critical period for the acquisition of compositional semantics. A modular approach to language architecture is assumed. The book addresses the Critical Period Hypothesis by examining the positive side of language development: it demonstrates which modules of the grammar are easy to acquire and are not subject to age effects. The Bottleneck Hypothesis is proposed, which argues that inflectional morphology and its features present the most formidable challenge, while syntax and phrasal semantics pose less difficulty. The numerous empirical studies reviewed in the book indicate that there is no critical period for acquisition of meaning. The findings suggest that an enhanced focus on practicing grammar in language classrooms will be beneficial to learners"--Provided by publisher.
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