the matrix language frame model

Rakesh M. Bhatt rbhatt at
Mon Sep 15 02:49:45 UTC 2008


MLF model is, among many others, a framework for understanding the (restrictive) range of structural possibilities allowed in mixing (code-switching between) two languages. The circularity  that some have suggested in this model has perhaps to do with the determination of what constitutes the Matrix Language since a good part of the model is predicated on that determination.  At least in situations where the indexicalities of the languages in contact are stable and transparent (English and Hindi in India, for example), it is quite possible to determine what the Matrix Language is in clause-internal code-switching. For generative-theoretic (manily Minimalist) reasons and empirical reasons, Matrix Language is determined by Tense [morpheme], which makes theoretical sense since TNS (in Comp) has scope over the entire clause. Myers-Scotton also mentions this as one possibility, and I believe Treferrs-Daller also makes use of it in her book on Code-Switching.  Oh, and I have used !
, too.

Hope that helps!


---- Original message ----
>Date: Sun, 14 Sep 2008 12:39:07 -0700 (PDT)
>From: mostari hind <hmostari at>  
>Subject: the matrix language frame model   
>To: lgpolicy-list at
>   hi every body ,                                      
>   i have a  question  for you :                        
>   it is said that that the MLF model ( the matrix      
>   language frame model) is not circular as some have   
>   suggested ( Myers-Scotton,2002:67)                   
>   what does it mean circular ?                         
>   thank you for answering me                           
>   Dr Mostari                                           
>   Algeria                                              
>   ---                                                  
Associate Professor of Linguistics and SLATE
Department of Linguistics
University of Illinois
4080 FLB, 707 S. Mathews Ave
Urbana, IL 61801

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