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I have to teach a class on second language learning this week in my course in Psychology of Language, so I've turned to Lantolf. My university library webpage has been down for maintenance this weekend so I've had limited access to his writing, but what I have been able to read has confused me. In a couple of articles I find reasonable summaries of LSV's ideas, but then Lantolf doesn't get around to applying these ideas to L2! Looking at abstracts in Google Scholar it seems that he's proposing that (1) L2 is learned in the ZPD (what isn't?), (2) L2 is a mediator (what isn't?), and (3) private speech occurs in L2 (okay, that could be interesting). I was expecting him to attribute some role to L2 in the higher functions, or to suggest that L2 mediates in a specific way, or...
What am I missing?
Plus, I have a growing suspicion that most L2 research is conducted on people willingly studying a foreign language in the classroom. Not much, or nothing, on people who are forced to abandon their mother tongue because they live somewhere where school, and/or work, is available only if they speak a dominant language. I'm hoping you'll tell me I'm wrong about this!