The effect of linguistic proficiency, age of second language acquisition, and length of exposure to a new cultural environment on bilinguals’ divergent thinking
The study argues that, in addition to advantages in conscious attention-demanding processing, bilinguals may also exhibit enhanced unconscious divergent thinking. To investigate this issue, the performance of Russian–English bilingual immigrants and English monolingual native speakers was compared on the Abbreviated Torrance Test for Adults, which is a traditional assessment tool of divergent thinking. The study reveals bilinguals' superiority on divergent thinking tasks that require the ability to simultaneously activate and process multiple unrelated concepts from distant categories. Divergent thinking was facilitated by bilinguals' proficiency in two languages, the age of acquisition of these languages and the length of exposure to the new cultural settings that accompanies the acquisition of a new language. A specific architecture of bilingual memory in which two lexicons are mutually linked to the shared conceptual system is theorized to facilitate the functioning of the language mediated concept activation, thereby encouraging bilinguals' divergent thinking performance.
There is currently the growing interest to the issue of bilingual creativity and language play in different communicative spheres, including the sphere of computer-mediated communication. The present article aims to reveal the peculiarities of English-Russian language play in the area of internet domain names and to highlight their significance for the investigation of the English language status in modern Russia.
The paper shows that English in modern Russia, like in many other Expanding Circle countries, is predominantly used in a mix with Russian in the creative (poetic, aesthetic, imaginative, or innovative) function in various domains. In this article, the peculiarities of the creative use of English in the Russian context are highlighted, and the article also discusses the semantic and pragmatic aspects of English-Russian language play, demonstrating that English can be played on either just for entertainment or for conveying complex ideological meanings, determined by controversial attitudes to Westernization and Englishization in Russian society.
This chapter highlights the possibilities of a systematic account of bilingual language play as an essential feature of world Englishes by establishing some basic similarities and peculiarities in the playful use of English‐related bilingual resources in different world Englishes contexts. Next, it specifies some key terms relevant for the discussion. The major formal patterns of bilingual language play are identified, as well as various sociopsychological connotations commonly rendered through the use of these patterns. The major linguistic features of English interacting playfully with different local languages are illustrated by data analyzed in various publications and supported by examples from the author's own corpus of English‐Russian language play. Then the chapter addresses the implications of bilingual language play for the status and role of English in various communities. It concludes with an outline of the possible directions of future research into bilingual language play that may contribute to world Englishes theory.
The article argues that the scope of English-Russian language contact studies should be extended to embrace the initial stages of English-Russian mass bilingualism formation and should involve the approaches and concepts developed within the framework of the World Englishes Paradigm. The following major features of the present-day English-Russian contact situation are addressed: “minimal” and “incipient” character of mass English-Russian bilingualism; increase in intrasentential English-Russian code-switching and code-mixing; extensive use of “emblematic”, or “symbolic” English language markers, including “tag-switches”; constraints imposed on the use of English in Russian contexts, Russianization of English, indications of Russia(n) English formation; the predominance of creative/innovative function of English embedded into Russian speech.
This study explores the hypothesis that language of testing and mood states can influence creativity in bilinguals. Arabic-English bilingual speakers were induced into positive or negative mood states using film clips and recall-of-events procedures. Then, participants’ creativity was assessed with the Abbreviated Torrance Test for Adults. Participants were tested in either English or Arabic. A Picture Naming Test revealed English as participants’ stronger language and Arabic as their weaker language. Testing in English was found to enhance verbal fluency and originality, as compared to testing in Arabic. Most importantly, an interactive effect of induction (positive, negative) and language of testing (English, Arabic) on creativity emerged. The results revealed two conditions beneficial for participants’ nonverbal originality: a positive mood state when tested in English and a negative mood state when tested in Arabic. These results are discussed in light of the interactive effect of mood induction and linguistic context (stronger vs. weaker) on an individual’s creativity.
The distractive effects on attentional task performance in different paradigms are analyzed in this paper. I demonstrate how distractors may negatively affect (interference effect), positively (redundancy effect) or neutrally (null effect). Distractor effects described in literature are classified in accordance with their hypothetical source. The general rule of the theory is also introduced. It contains the formal prediction of the particular distractor effect, based on entropy and redundancy measures from the mathematical theory of communication (Shannon, 1948). Single- vs dual-process frameworks are considered for hypothetical mechanisms which underpin the distractor effects. Distractor profiles (DPs) are also introduced for the formalization and simple visualization of experimental data concerning the distractor effects. Typical shapes of DPs and their interpretations are discussed with examples from three frequently cited experiments. Finally, the paper introduces hierarchical hypothesis that states the level-fashion modulating interrelations between distractor effects of different classes.
This article describes the expierence of studying factors influencing the social well-being of educational migrants as mesured by means of a psychological well-being scale (A. Perrudet-Badoux, G.A. Mendelsohn, J.Chiche, 1988) previously adapted for Russian by M.V. Sokolova. A statistical analysis of the scale's reliability is performed. Trends in dynamics of subjective well-being are indentified on the basis the correlations analysis between the condbtbions of adaptation and its success rate, and potential mechanisms for developing subjective well-being among student migrants living in student hostels are described. Particular attention is paid to commuting as a factor of adaptation.