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Title: The syntax of the dialect of Bari
Author: Andriani, Luigi
ISNI:       0000 0004 7224 9251
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2017
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This dissertation describes and analyses a selection of morphosyntactic phenomena from the nominal, verbal and clausal domains of Barese, an upper southern Italian dialect of Puglia. Chapter 2 analyses pragmatically unmarked and marked sentential word orders in Barese. Barese is a null-subject language whose unmarked transitive word order is (S)VO, in which syntactic constituents can be displaced in accordance with their pragmatico-semantic relevance to the discourse. One peculiarity of Barese regards intransitives encoding a loco-temporal (c)overt argument, where VS and SV orders may both mark sentence-focus. While VS encodes a null loco-temporal argument, SV serves to encode broad focus whenever S is ‘accessible’ in the mind of both discourse participants forming part of their ‘common ground’. Chapter 3 examines the structure of Barese nominal expressions, focusing on the interaction between adjectives, possessives and demonstratives. Barese nominals nearly systematically precede adjectives and possessives, except for a small class of rudimentary evaluative adjectives which may occur prenominally. These orders, derived via the phrasal movement of the nominal across its modifiers, are contrasted with the head movement of a morpholexically restricted class of kinship nominals which can be modified by a defective set of enclitic possessives. The final section analyses the behaviour of Barese demonstratives, which only occur in prenominal position. In particular, a peculiar Barese structure which combines the definite article with the distal demonstrative pronoun is analysed, highlighting how it specifically marks discourse-old referents. Chapter 4 describes the mechanisms of auxiliary selection and past participle agreement operative in Barese. In relation to the former, Barese displays three different factors which may determine auxiliary selection, namely person, tense and mood. These three dimensions of variation are analysed in terms of parameter hierarchies which formalise the complexity of the semantic features involved in the selection of the auxiliaries HAVE and BE. It is argued that this complexity reflects different diachronic stages of auxiliary selection across different generations of speakers. The final section investigates Barese active past participle agreement which, unlike auxiliary selection, displays a conservative distribution licensed by direct objects and Undergoer subjects. The peculiarity of Barese, however, is that agreement is morpholexically limited to a small number of ‘strong’ participles which mark agreement exclusively through metaphonetic alternation. The final chapter is concerned with Barese progressive and andative periphrases which variously show inflected forms of the lexical verb in the 2SG-3SG of the present in place of the infinitive. These structures have been argued for Salentino and Sicilian dialects to have developed from instances of coordination with Latin AC ‘and’, which were then reinterpreted as instances of (pseudo-)coordination, namely subordination. In contrast, a different origin for these inflected forms of the lexical verb is proposed for Barese, where AC-coordination is not historically attested. It is argued that the loss of the infinitival ending -RE produced morphophonological identity, viz. syncretism, between the 3SG(/2SG) present and the infinitive, enabling the latter to be reinterpreted as a finite form within the periphrasis. This spred further across the neighbouring dialects to include more grammatical persons (3SG/2SG > 1SG > 3PL > all), as well as past and irrealis paradigms.
Supervisor: Ledgeway, Adam Sponsor: AHRC ; CHESS
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Barese ; morphosyntax ; Italian dialect ; Romance languages