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LINGUIST List 17.3421

Tue Nov 21 2006

Diss: Syntax/Morphology: Sàláwù: 'A Comparative Study of the Syntax...'

Editor for this issue: Hannah Morales <hannahlinguistlist.org>


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        1.    Hannah Morales, A Comparative Study of the Syntax of Yorùbá and Òko-Ósànyèn (Àfiwé Ìtúpalè Síntáàsì Èdè Yorùbá àti Òko-Ósànyèn)


Message 1: A Comparative Study of the Syntax of Yorùbá and Òko-Ósànyèn (Àfiwé Ìtúpalè Síntáàsì Èdè Yorùbá àti Òko-Ósànyèn)
Date: 21-Nov-2006
From: Hannah Morales <hannahlinguistlist.org>
Subject: A Comparative Study of the Syntax of Yorùbá and Òko-Ósànyèn (Àfiwé Ìtúpalè Síntáàsì Èdè Yorùbá àti Òko-Ósànyèn)


Institution: Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife
Program: African Languages and Literatures
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2006

Author: Akeem Ségun Sàláwù

Dissertation Title: A Comparative Study of the Syntax of Yorùbá and Òko-Ósànyèn (Àfiwé Ìtúpalè Síntáàsì Èdè Yorùbá àti Òko-Ósànyèn)

Linguistic Field(s): Morphology
                            Syntax

Subject Language(s): Oko-Eni-Osayen (oks)
                            Yoruba (yor)
Language Family(ies): Niger-Congo

Dissertation Director:
Lawrence Olúfémi Adéwọlé

Dissertation Abstract:

This thesis primarily highlighted the similarities and dissimilarities in the syntactic
components of the standard variety of Yorùbá language and Òko-Ósànyèn, a language
spoken in Ògòrì-Màgóngò Local Government Area of Kogi State, Nigeria. It also identified
the language universals and language specifics in various domains of the two languages.
This contrastive effort was also with a view to directing attention to the need for a
re-classification of the West Benue-Congo and Niger-Congo phyla of the West African
Languages.

The methodology for the research involved the collection of data through oral interview
with forty native speakers of each of the two languages. The age bracket of these
informants ranged from forty and eighty years. It was believed that these speakers were
old enough to speak the languages with minimum interference. This was supported by
Ìbàdàn 400-wordlist and a set of relevant self-generated questions. The investigation also
involved library and archival researches which were undertaken to effect an extensive
review of literature. The data analysis was carried out within a modular generative
grammar known as the Principles and Parameters Theory.

It was found that the syntactic processes such as relativization, topicalization and
focusing in the two languages were similar whereas they are different in the areas such
as anti-focus, the presence or otherwise of the phonological impacts on the pronominal
and the forms of negation.The study also discovered that the controversies on the
Mid-Tone Syllable, variant forms of the formative gbódò (must) and underlying
representational form of the third singular pronoun object in the standard variety of
Yorùbá were unnecessary in view of the fact the inherent forms and functions of all those
features in the syntactic constructions of the Òko-Ósànyèn language pointed to their
proto statuses.

The study concluded that although Òko-Ósànyèn was an endangered language whereas
Yorùbá was not, the syntactic relatedness of the former to the latter, by and large
pointed to a common ancestry.



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