Implicit argument constructions in Venda

Tshithukhe, Azwihangwisi Seth (1997-03)

Thesis (MA)--Stellenbosch University, 1997.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: This study explores the implicit argument in Venda. It concentrates on the omissibility of overt arguments in a range of constructions in Venda. Section one, the introduction of this study project, examines the general framework assumed in the theory of Government and Binding (GB theory) as outlined in Chomsky ( 1982). It is indicated that the GB theory comprises of major subtheories, such as Government Theory, Case Theory, Theta theory, Binding theory, Control theory and the X-bar theory. A brief explanation of the Theta theory and the Control theory is made, for they are employed in the discussion of implicit argument constructions in Venda. Section two deals with the previous views on implicit arguments. The studies on this issue by Williams (1987) Safir (1987) Jaeggli (1987) Roeper (1987) and Clark (1990) are discussed in detail. Exploration of the control of PRO of the infinitival clause by the implicit argument, is made, i.e. control of the PRO by an unrealized argument in an NP complement. Section three deals with implicit arguments in passive and neuter-passive verb constructions, i.e. it explores the occurrence of the implicit argument in passive and neuter-passive constructions in Venda is made. It becomes apparent here that the implicit argument whose presence may always be assumed in passive constructions lacking an overt agent, does occur in passive and neuter-passive constructions in Venda. Generally, it becomes evident in this section that for most of the passive verbs in the matrix clauses to allow purposive infinitival complement clauses, the suffix -el- should be affixed to them. Section four deals with nominal infinitive constructions, i.e. it explores the occurrence of the implicit argument in nominal infinitive constructions in Venda. It has been indicated in this section that an implicit argument can occur in nominal infinitive constructions with a purposive infinitival complement in Venda, and that the applicative -el- has a role to play in the construction of sentences, in that it licences purposive infinitives when it is affixed to nominal infinitive verbs. Section five deals with deverbal event nominals and the occurrence of deverbal event nominals with a purposive infinitival complement clause. Control of the PRO subject of the infinitival complement clause is explored. It becomes apparent in this section that deverbal event nominals with a monotransitive or ditransitive verb base can allow purposive infinitival complement clauses as well as non-complement clauses and that these infinitives must be nominal infinitives preceded by the genitive -a-. Section six deals with the expletive verb constructions in Venda. It has been demonstrated in this section that the implicit argument is projected onto the syntactic position of the preposition kha and that Venda expletive verbal construction can allow an infinitive clause. Section seven is the conclusion where a presentation of the main findings of this study project is made.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Hierdie studie ondersoek die implisiete argument in Venda. Dit fokus op die weglaatbaarheid van 'n overte argument in 'n verskeidenheid sinskonstruksies in Venda. Afdeling een, die inleiding tot die studieprojek, gee 'n algemene oorsig van die teorie van Regering en Binding (GB teorie) soos uiteengesit in Chomsky (1982). Daar word genoem dat GB teorie verskeie sub-sisteme van beginsels insluit, onder andere, die Regeringsteorie, Kasusteorie, Theta-teorie, Bindingsteorie, Kontroleteorie en X-balk teorie. 'n Kort bespreking word gegee van Theta-teorie en Kontroleteorie aangesien hierdie subsisteme van beginsels van besondere belang is in die bespreking van implisiete argument-konstruksies in Venda. Afdeling twee gee 'n oorsig van vorige beskouinge oor implisiete argumente. Die studies oor hierdie aspek soos behandel deur Williams (1987) Safir (1987) Jaeggli (1987) Roeper (1987) en Clark (1990) word bespreek. 'n Ondersoek word gedoen na die kontrole van PRO van die infinitiefklous deur 'n implisiete argument, d.w.s. die kontrole van PRO deur 'n ongerealiseerde (of nie-overte) argument in 'n NP komplement. Afdeling drie ondersoek implisiete argumente in passief- en neutro-passief werkwoord konstruksies. Dit blyk dat die implisiete argument wat altyd teenwoordig is in passiefkonstruksies, sonder 'n overte agent, verskyn in passiefsowel as neutro-passiefkonstruksies in Venda. Dit blyk voorts dat die meeste van die matriksklouswerkwoorde die applikatiewe suffiks -el- moet neem ten einde 'n doel-infinitief-klous te neem. Afdeling vier ondersoek nominate infinitiefkonstruksies en die verskyning van implisiete argumente. Daar word aangetoon dat 'n implisiete argument kan verskyn in nominate infinitief-konstruksies met 'n doel infinitiefkasus en dat die applikatiefsuffiks 'n rol speel in die toelaatbaarheid van die doel infinitiefklous met nominate infinitiewe. Afdeling vyf ondersoek deverbatiewe gebeurtenis ('event') nominate en die verskyning van doel infinitiefklouse as komplement van hierdie deverbatiewe. Kontrole van PRO in die infinitiefklous word bespreek. Daar word in hierdie afdeling aangetoon dat deverbatiewe gebeurtenis nominate met 'n enkel- of dubbeloorganklike werkwoordbasis, doel infinitiefklouse kan toelaat as komplemente, asook infinitiewe nie-komplementklouse voorafgegaan deur die genitiewe (possessiewe) -a-. Afdeling ses ondersoek ekspeletiewe werkwoordkonstruksies in Venda. Daar word in hierdie afdeling aangetoon dat die implisiete afgument geprojekteer word na 'n sintaktiese posisie wat 'n komplement is van die preposisie kha en dat ekspletiewe werkwoordkonstruksies in Venda 'n infinitief- klous komplement kan neem. Afdeling sewe bied die konklusie en belangrikste bevindinge van die studie.

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