Exploring the Effects of Processing Instruction on a Discourse-level Guided Composition with the Spanish Subjunctive after the Adverb Cuando

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Book Chapter

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Processing Instruction and Discourse


Several investigations on the effects of PI on L2 development have examined subjunctive mood verbal morphology. To date, they have all examined what is popularly termed in pedagogical grammars the subjunctive of doubt (Farley 2001a, 2001b, 2004a, 2004b; Lee and Benati 2007a, 2007b). What grammarians call complex sentences are those that contain independent and dependent clauses, or main and subordinate clauses. The terminology illustrates certain grammatical interrelationships. For Italian and other Romance languages (French, Spanish) when the semantic intent of the independent clause expresses doubt, disbelief, uncertainty or, in some languages, opinion, then the verb in the dependent clause must be in the subjunctive mood. In other words, the semantics of the independent clause triggers the form of the verb in the dependent clause. Note the following example; the subjunctive form is in bold typeface.

(1) Dubito che Alessandro sia intellegente.
I doubt that Alessandro is intelligent.


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