Grammar competence in Lule Sami L1 and L2 young speakers: An investigation of consonant gradation, the grammar of spatial expressions and personal pronouns marked for dual
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The current master thesis is a study of the grammatical competence of Lulesami speakers. Lule Sami is a minority language in Norway and Sweden that suffers under the dominant languages of the aforementioned nation states. Lule Sami speakers today are bilinguals with varying degrees of proficiency in their mother tongue. Very little research has been done on this endangered language, especially when it comes to the field of language acquisition. Based on a battery of tests, the study is an investigation of the use of three grammatical features, which include grade alternation, the grammar of spatial expressions, and personal pronouns marked for dual. These are all grammar elements that differ significantly from Norwegian, and one of the objectives of this study was to investigate the influence of Norwegian on Lule Sami. Focal points of the study were therefore to compare and explore whether there were any differences between Lule Sami speakers of different proficiencies. Both L1 and L2 speakers of Lule Sami participated in this study. The results show that Lule Sami is subject to cross-linguistic influence when it comes to all of the aforementioned grammatical categories. Furthermore, the differences in performance may be attributed to both quality and quality of input.