How do native speakers perceive boundary tones produced by L2 speakers of Spanish? Pragmatic effects of prosodic transfer from Swedish into Spanish
Berit Aronsson, Universidad de Umeå, Suecia
Berit Aronsson, 2015: "¿Cómo percibe el hablante nativo los tonos de frontera producidos por hablantes de español L2? Efectos pragmáticos de una transferencia prosódica del sueco al español", Onomázein 32, 11-36.
DOI: 10.7764/onomazein.32.2

Abstract:
The paper investigates possible communicative effects caused by transfer from Swedish into L2 Spanish of prosodic patterns manifested in rising boundary tones, as occurring in the speech act of “requests”. More specifically it studies whether there is any difference between transactional (+/- request for information) and interpersonal values (+/- value of friendliness) perceived in boundary tones produced in EL1, EL2 and SL1, depending on whether the evaluator is Spanish, Chilean or Swedish respectively. It also discusses whether these differences affect the valuation of the utterance in a way that may interfere with communication.
The results show that the realisation of the rising boundary tones is the feature that mostly contributes to the foreign accent of Spanish spoken by Swedes. The results also show that the intersubjective value associated with a rising boundary tone is negatively affected when the intonational features of L2 Spanish do not match those of Spanish L1. Different discursive preferences in the Spanish and Swedish L1 are proposed as explanations to these results. The study finally suggests that teachers of Spanish as L2 pay attention to suprasegmental features that carry important pragmatic values, since the acquisition of these patterns can be of relevance for successful interaction with native speakers.