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Title: Silozi constituent ordering and the theory of end weight
Author: Kashina, Kashina
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2000
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This thesis has two aims. The first is to provide a description of constituent ordering in Silozi syntactic structures. It also describes the language's morphological structure. The other is to ascertain, in an empirical way, the extent to which Dik's categorial complexity hypothesis (or LIPOC) affects the ordering of constituents in Silozi syntactic structures. It is also claimed that the internal structure of a constituent can have a direct effect on its placement, since the composition of syntactic units in terms of length and structural complexity is a further factor influencing their linear ordering. Using a database of spoken and written Silozi texts, the thesis employs both qualitative and quantitative methods to investigate the distribution of constituents in their functional profiles. The methodology used involves counting and studying the distribution of all the constituents (elements) of the clause and sentence. The constructions studied are SVX, XSVX and special focusing constructions. In short, the study considers parameters of constituent order variation in discourse. The study concludes that there is a strong correlation between the internal structure of constituents and the position in which they occur in a clause or sentence. This is so especially in constructions that place the subject in the initial position (SVX) which constitute the bulk of the data. There is also evidence for this hypothesis in some focusing constructions. The study has also found that in constructions which place constituents other than the subject in the initial position, the ordering significantly contradicts the predictions of this hypothesis. The bulk of these are those which place adverbial constituents in the initial position. Left dislocations and fronting or topicalizations also contradict the predictions of the hypothesis. Although evidence for the effect has been found in both spoken and written discourse, the study takes the view that the two mediums of Silozi display different syntactic patterns of use. This is primarily because the two types of language have different syntactic patterns of use, which are attributable to the circumstances under which they are produced.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available