A minimalist analysis of expletive daar (“there”) and dit (“it”) constructions in Afrikaans

De Bruin, Jeané (2011-03)

Thesis (MA (General Linguistics))--University of Stellenbosch, 2011.

Bibliography

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study deals with syntactic aspects of expletive daar (“there”) and dit (“it”) constructions in Afrikaans. Previous analyses of these constructions have mostly been of a non-formalistic nature (e.g. Barnes 1984; Donaldson 1993; Du Plessis 1977; Ponelis 1979, 1993). The present study investigates the properties of Afrikaans expletive constructions within the broad theoretical framework of Minimalist Syntax. Four recent minimalist analyses of expletive constructions in English, Dutch and German are set out, namely those proposed by Bowers (2002), Felser and Rupp (2001), Richards and Biberauer (2005), and Radford (2009). Against this background, an analysis is proposed of transitive, non-passive unaccusative, passive unaccusative, and unergative expletive constructions in Afrikaans. Throughout, the focus is on whether the devices available within Minimalist Syntax, and specifically the Expletive Conditions proposed by Radford (2009), provide an adequate framework in which the relevant facts of Afrikaans can be described and explained. Where required, modifications to the devices in question are proposed.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie handel oor sintaktiese aspekte van ekspletiewe daar- en dit-konstruksies in Afrikaans. Vorige analises van dié konstruksies was grootliks nie-formalisties van aard (bv. Barnes 1984; Donaldson 1993; Du Plessis 1977; Ponelis 1979, 1993). Die huidige studie ondersoek die eienskappe van Afrikaanse ekspletiewe konstruksies binne die breë teoretiese raamwerk van Minimalistiese Sintaksis. Vier onlangse minimalistiese analises van ekspletiewe konstruksies in Engels, Nederlands en Duits word uiteengesit, naamlik dié wat voorgestel is deur Bowers (2002), Felser en Rupp (2001), Richards en Biberauer (2005), en Radford (2009). Teen hierdie agtergrond word ’n analise voorgestel van transitiewe, nie-passiewe onakkusatiewe, passiewe onakkusatiewe, en onergatiewe ekspletiewe konstruksies in Afrikaans. Die fokus is deurgaans op die vraag of die meganismes wat beskikbaar is binne Minimalistiese Sintaksis, en spesifiek die drie Ekspletiewe Voorwaardes wat voorgestel word deur Radford (2009), ’n toereikende raamwerk bied waarbinne die tersaaklike feite van Afrikaans beskryf en verklaar kan word. Waar nodig, word aanpassings aan die betrokke meganismes voorgestel.

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