Bilingualism and Access to the Spanish Language by Russian-Romanian Bilinguals

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Summary

Bilingualism is a complex process involving a variety of characteristics, among which we can distinguish a particular system of a language, as well as the ability to use it in communication. Apart from the mere fact of acquiring the knowledge of a second language, bilingualism also implies the development of specific linguistic structuring and brain functioning different from those of a monolingual individual. This fact is crucial at the time of comprehension and, consequently, learning of a third language and this is why it has been studied by analysing the understanding ability of bilingual informants to refer to a third language without the prior learning of this language and the comparison of the results with those obtained for monolingual individuals presenting each language. Thus, the hypothesis involved considers individuals presenting bilingualism between two different language families (on the example of Russian-Romanian bilingualism) manifesting better understanding of a language from one of the language families they speak natively (on the example of the Spanish language) in comparison with monolingual people presenting one of the languages considered in bilingual individuals (i.e. Russian and Romanian monolinguals). This difference between bilingual and monolingual people in the access to a third language mainly involves the difference in the way of thinking and analysing the acquired linguistic data, resulting in a more effective capacity for understanding. The specification of brain organization and the analysis of linguistic data are due to the creation of specific psycholinguistic strategies by the bilingual individual.

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