Language Contact, its Pros and Cons in the Learning of English as a Second Language: A Study of Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Adichie

Gertrude Nnenna Eze


In the teaching and learning of a second language, the issue of language transfer from the first language arises. The linguistic effects of this transfer bifurcate into a negative or positive impact on the learning of the second language. Whilst the negative is termed linguistic interference and  has remained a serious problem which the bilingual has to contend with, very little attention has been given to the positive implications of language contact in the second  language learning situation. This paper seeks to explore the negative and the positive aspects of language contact (linguistic interference) in learning English as a second language, their causes with regards to code switching and mixing, especially in the written discourse. For this purpose, personal observations on verbal discourse by the writer and the text, Half of the Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Adichie has been selected for data analysis. The paper goes further to proffer solutions for linguistic interference in the use of English language in Nigeria and to promote the positive effects of language contact in learning English as a second language.

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