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Revitalizing Endangered Languages

Edited by Justyna Olko & Julia Sallabank

Revitalizing Endangered Languages "This guidebook provides ideas and strategies, as well as some background, to help with the effective revitalization of endangered languages. It covers a broad scope of themes including effective planning, benefits, wellbeing, economic aspects, attitudes and ideologies."

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Dissertation Information

Title: The Analysis of Correlations between Thematic Roles and Syntactic Relations in Turkish Sentences Add Dissertation
Author: Nafi Yalcin Update Dissertation
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Hacettepe University, Department of English Linguistics
Completed in: 2002
Linguistic Subfield(s): Semantics; Syntax;
Subject Language(s): Turkish
Director(s): Ahmet Kocaman
Oya Külebi
Güray König
Zülal Balpinar

Abstract: Considering the developments concerning semantic and syntactic approaches
within the framework of Generative Grammar we have intended, in this study,
to analyze the thematic and syntactic structures of sentences in Turkish,
and to find out the principles underlying the correspondence between the
two domains, and then to observe how the findings can shed light on certain
aspects of Turkish Grammar more satisfactorily.

The first chapter provides theoretical bases and developments of Case
grammar models gained wide popularity. They are briefly presented with
regard to their logical structures, list of cases, case tactics,
derivational systems, and use of covert case roles.

The second chapter introduces in detail, Chafe’s and Fillmore’s approaches
to the study of language in generative semantics. The central position of
verb in determining the argument structure, the derivational system linking
together various verb types, the organization of a set of cases into case
frames for verbs of a particular language are Chafe’s ideas that
contributed considerably to the realization of this study. Fillmore’s case
roles, Stative Location, Source and Goal have been adopted as variations of
Location in complementary distribution. The grammatical terms to be used
throughout the thesis are also defined in this chapter.

In the third chapter, simplex Turkish verbs that have not undergone any
grammatical transformation are analyzed in detail and are classified into
distinct sixteen verb categories. A number of verbs belonging to each
category are analyzed in terms of the thematic roles and grammatical
relations undertaken by the noun phrases required by these verbs. Then
possible correlations between thematic roles and grammatical relations
cooccuring with each verb category are determined. These correlations are
considered to provide us with a substantial comprehension of the behaviors
of arguments during voice alterations and verb derivations.

In the fourth chapter, Turkish verb categories are investigated in terms of
morphological, semantic and syntactic aspects and behaviors of arguments,
as they go through voice alterations. The impact of voice transformations
on the encoding of thematic roles and grammatical relations are studied and
certain generalizations concerning the changes in valency and argument
structure of Turkish verbs; productivity of and constraints on voice
constructions; making distinction between voice types are worked out.

In the fifth chapter it is argued that the distribution of thematic roles
to grammatical relations works within a certain hierarchical order. It is
also claimed that the suffixation process of voice constructions often end
up with ambiguities which can be clarified by the parameters and measures
rendered by “the correlational approach to thematic roles and syntactic
relations” elaborated in this study. Consequently, by means of various
semantic and syntactic devices provided here, it seems possible to make a
clear distinction between passive and impersonal constructions; passive and
reflexive voices; reciprocal and cooperative structures.