Syntactic categories and argument structure in Parakuyo-Maasai

Karani, Michael (2018-03)

Thesis (PhD)--Stellenbosch University, 2018.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study investigated issues pertaining to the properties of verbal affixes in Parakuyo that give rise to different realizations of the external and internal arguments. The study examines a range of argument realizations and alternation licensed by verbs with specific lexical-semantic, event semantic and morpho-syntactic properties introduced by the particular verbal suffixes. Thus, the study explores the interfaces of the linguistic components, mainly morphology and syntax in the Parakuyo grammar. The data were collected through focus group discussions and interviews from native speakers of the Parakuyo dialect. The theoretical framework and key perspectives employed in the study relate to key concepts underlying developments in generative syntax including Principles and Parameters theory, Minimalist Program, Distributed Morphology, Voice theory, ‘little’ v, and Cartography theory. This study employs a multi-perspective framework for investigating the lexical-semantics, event semantics and morpho-syntax of the verbal category system of affixes correlated with argument structure alternations of various kinds that necessitate exploring the interfaces between morphology and syntax that cannot be accounted for by employing any one theory. This study provides account of a range of the properties of syntactic structures in Parakuyo exemplifying the various verbal derivation affixes. Different syntactic diagnostics tests for external argument have been employed to determine whether the reference of the implicit argument can be retrieved, particularly in argument suppressing suffixes, namely the impersonal and the middle in Parakuyo. Among the diagnostic tests applied, include possibilities of modification by by-phrases, PPs modification, by-itself phrases, agentive adverbials and purpose clauses. The findings give evidence that impersonals and middles in Parakuyo do not permit an agent to occur as a subject DP or as a PP adverbial but causer, causer-event and instrumental-causer can occur in a PP modification. Both impersonal and middle verb constructions can be modified by manner-oriented adverbs. The study also relates the discussions of the verbal affixes and argument realization with other pertinent aspects like information structure and aspectual types in the events denoted by the verbs. In addition, the study examines argument-introducing affixes in Parakuyo verb constructions. These affixes are the causative, the instrumental, the dative, the motion away and motion towards affixes. The investigation of these verbal constructions demonstrates the processes of argument realization and alternation in the Parakuyo dialect. The mapping of the thematic roles for each argument introduced is done parallel to various arguments in the clauses. Furthermore, the study examines verbal suffixes in Parakuyo that do not suppress the external argument but have effect on the internal argument in various ways including the thematic roles of such arguments. The findings suggest that both the antipassive and reciprocal in a way suppress the internal argument while reflexive constructions exhibit mixed properties towards the status of internal argument, that is, introducing the internal argument by its morphology and suppressing the same through its reflexive pronoun. Inchoative focuses on the change of state of its internal argument rendering the resultant-state. It is concluded that the multifaceted theoretical framework employed in this study is necessitated for adequately analysing the Parakuyo data.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie ondersoek vraagstukke rakende die eienskappe van werkwoordelike afleidings-affikse in Parakuyo-Maasai wat aanleiding gee tot verskillende realisasies van die eksterne en interne argumente van werkwoorde. Die studie ondersoek ‘n verskeidenheid argument realisasies en alternasies wat toegelaat word deur werkwoorde met spesifieke leksikaal-semantiese, aspek-semantiese en morfo-sintaktiese eienskappe aangevoer deur die onderskeie werkwoord-affikse. Dit bring gevolglik mee dat die studie ook ‘n ondersoek doen van die raakvlakke van die linguistiese komponente, in die besonder, die raakvlakke van interaksies van die morfologie en sintaksis in die Parakuyo grammatika. Die Parakuyo data wat ondersoek word in die studie is versamel deur fokusgroepbesprekings en onderhoude met eerstetaalsprekers van die Parakuyo dialek. Die teoretiese raamwerk en sleutelperspektiewe aanvaar vir die studie hou verband met sleutelkonsepte onderliggend aan ontwikkelings en generatiewe sintaksis, insluitende die Beginsels en Parameters (‘Principles and Parameters’) teorie, Verspreide (‘Distributed’) morfologie, ‘Voice’ teorie, ‘klein’ v teorie en Kartografie teorie. Dus word ‘n multi-perspektief raamwerk ingespan in die studie vir die ondersoek van die leksikale semantiek aspek (‘event’) semantiek en morfo-sintaksis van die werkwoordkategorie sisteem van affikse gekorrelleer met argumentstruktuur alternasies van verskeie soorte, wat noodsaaklike ondersoek meebring van die raakvlakke tussen die morfologie, sintaksis en aspek semantiek, wat nie verklaar kan word deur ‘n enkele teorie nie. Die studie bied ‘n verklaring van verskeie eienskappe van sintaktiese strukture in Parakuyo wat die onderskeie werkwoordelike afleidings-affikse vertoon. Verskillende diagnostiese toetse is ingespan om te bepaal of die verwysing van die implisiete argument herwin kan word, veral met betrekking tot argument onderdrukkings-affikse, dit is, onpersoonlike suffiks en middel-suffiks konstruksies in Parakuyo. Van die diagnostiese toetse toegepas, sluit in modifisering deur die deur-frase, PP modifisering, deur self frase, agent-ge-oriënteerde adverbiale, en doel-bysinne. Die bevindinge bied evidensie dat onpersoonlike en middel werkwoordkonstruksies in Parakuyo verbied ‘n agent argument se verskyning as ‘n subjek DP of in PP modifisering. Sowel onpersoonlike as middelwerkwoordkonstruksies laat modifisering toe deur agent-georiënteerde adverbiale. Die studie bring ook die ondersoek van die werkwoord-affikse en argument-realisering in verband met ander aspekte soos informasiestruktuur en aspektuele tipes in die gebeurlikheid aangedui deur die werkwoord. Die studie ondersoek voorts argument-invoeringsaffikse in Parakuyo. Hierdie affikse sluit in die kousatief, die instrumentalis, die datief, die beweging-na, en beweging-weg affikse. Die ondersoek na hierdie werkwoordkonstruksies demonstreer verdere prosesse van argument realisasie en alternasie in Parakuyo. Die projeksie van elke ingevoerde argument word beskou met betrekking tot ander argumente in die sin. Laastens ondersoek die studie werkwoord suffikse in Parakuyo wat nie die eksterne argument onderdruk nie, maar wel ‘n effek het op die interne argument op verskeie wyses, insluitende die tematiese rolle van sodanige argumente. Die bevindinge dui daarop dat sowel die antipassief as die resiprokalis die interne argument onderdruk op ‘n bepaalde wyse, terwyl die refleksief gemengde eienskappe vertoon met betrekking tot die status van die interne argument, dit is, die invoer van die interne argument deur die refleksiemorfologie en die onderdrukking daarvan deur die refleksiewe voornaamwoorde. Die inchoatief fokus op die verandering van toestand van die interne argument, en die resultaat-toestand lewer. Daar word tot die slotsom gekom dat die veel-fasettige teoretiese raamwerk aanvaar in die studie noodsaaklik is vir die adekwate analise van die Parakuyo data.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/103451
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