Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Verb subcategorization and verb derivation in Marshallese: A lexicase analysis
by Pagatto, Louise, Ph.D., University of Hawai'i at Manoa, 1987, 861; 3731421
Abstract (Summary)

The research presented in this dissertation is an application of lexicase, an empirical lexicalist theory of syntax, to the facts of Marshallese, one of the languages of the Micronesian language family. In particular, the dissertation focusses on two aspects of the syntax of Marshallese verbs: (1) the classification of verbs on the basis of their morphosyntactic properties, and (2) the formalization of certain derivational relationships between verbs and lexical items in other syntactic categories as well as between the various subcategories of verbs. However, the scope of the investigation has not been limited exclusively to verbs. An overview of the basic syntactic properties of Marshallese sentence types, the internal structure of noun phrases and the general properties of verbs and the constituents in their domains is provided in Chapter 2.

Marshallese verbs are subcategorized primarily on the basis of the syntactic features which encode their argument structure, i.e. the case relations which they imply and/or the verbal complements with which they must cooccur. The semantic and syntactic properties of case relations and the characteristics of the case marking system of Marshallese are presented in Chapter 3.

Given these subcategorization criteria, Marshallese is said to include nine major verb classes, subdivided on the basis of whether the verbs are transitive or intransitive, personal or˙ impersonal, extension or non-extension, and adjectival or non-adjectival. The syntactic properties of each of these categories are discussed in detail in Chapter 4.

The derivational relationships that hold between verbs and words of other grammatical categories, and between various subtypes of verbs are formalized in Chapter 5, capturing the morphological, semantic and syntactic relationships between sets of source and derived words.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Starosta, Stanley
School: University of Hawai'i at Manoa
School Location: United States -- Hawaii
Source: DAI-A 77/03(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Linguistics, Pacific Rim Studies
Keywords: Derivational rules, Marshallese language, Micronesian language, Morphology, Syntactic frames, Syntax
Publication Number: 3731421
ISBN: 978-1-339-17819-6
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