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Title: Serial verb constructions in Barayin : typology, description and lexical-functional grammar
Author: Lovestrand, Joseph
ISNI:       0000 0004 7653 237X
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2018
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Barayin is an East Chadic language spoken by around 5000 people in the Guera region of the Republic of Chad. This dissertation examines a particular type of syntactic construction in the language, serial verb constructions, from the perspectives of typological (or comparative) syntax, descriptive grammar, and the formal syntactic theory of Lexical-Functional Grammar (LFG). Typologically, serial verb constructions are problematic because they represent a heterogeneous set of multiverb constructions that have features that do not fit into traditional syntactic categories like subordination, conjunction and adjunction. Part A of this dissertation describes these problematic features in detail, providing a succinct overview of the literature which can serve as a resource for field linguists describing similar constructions. Part B of the dissertation gives a detailed description of the morphology, syntax and semantics of serial verb constructions in Barayin. These chapters contribute to our knowledge of the world's languages by documenting a complex syntactic phenomenon in an area of the world where most of the languages are significantly understudied. The most common type of SVC in Barayin involves a deictic motion verb. The motion is normally (but not always) understood to take place prior to the activity or state predicated by the main verb. The formal analysis of Barayin SVCs in Lexical-Functional Grammar in Part C uses recent developments in the theory to show how argument sharing in SVCs can be represented in a connected s-structure that conforms to the standard mechanisms of LFG. The approach is compared to two previous analyses of complex motion predicates in other languages which appeal to a non-standard formal mechanism to model complex predicates.
Supervisor: Dalrymple, Mary Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Linguistics ; Syntax