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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: Unlike Coordination in Polish: an LFG account Add Dissertation
Author: Agnieszka Patejuk Update Dissertation
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Polish Academy of Sciences, N/A
Completed in: 2015
Linguistic Subfield(s): Syntax;
Subject Language(s): Polish
Director(s): Adam Przepiórkowski

Abstract: This dissertation focuses on two coordination phenomena which are non-standard: conjuncts are not identical categorially or they do not correspond to the same grammatical function. It is based on rich attested data taken from the National Corpus of Polish (NKJP) and retrieved using Google. It offers a carefully formalised LFG analysis of these phenomena which is not an isolated grammar fragment – it was implemented in XLE as a part of POLFIE, a large scale LFG grammar of Polish. Such a design makes it possible to verify the proposed analysis, taking interactions with various phenomena into account – these include especially agreement, structural case assignment and control. Interactions with these phenomena are also addressed in this work and their formalisation is provided.

The issue of coordination of unlike categories was noticed in constraint-based theories of grammar as early as 1985, see the discussion in Sag et al. 1985. In LFG such coordination was mentioned in the so-called COMP vs OBJ debate (e.g. Alsina et al. 2005), but since this discussion focused on how particular grammatical functions should be defined, no formalised account of coordination of unlike categories was offered and no constraints necessary to handle this phenomenon were provided. As a result, this debate did not touch upon the issue of imposing different constraints on particular conjuncts under coordination, which turns out to be problematic in LFG because of the way in which disjunctive statements are interpreted in this context. This dissertation aims to fill this gap by discussing how unlike category coordination can be modelled in LFG and showing in detail how the lexicon should be designed to account for the coordination of unlike categories.

On the other hand, there is the phenomenon of coordination of different grammatical functions – it is known under a wide range of names, including hybrid coordination, lexico-semantic coordination and – more narrowly – coordinated wh-questions. This dissertation provides evidence that real coordination is involved in this phenomenon. It shows that conjuncts must belong to the same semantic type and that the range of possible types is usually restricted to wh-words and items which express various quantifiers, though it also discusses less frequent conjunct types (together with how they can be modified). Different types of dependents may be coordinated: arguments, modifiers and even particles. Furthermore, conjuncts do not have to be dependents of the same head – they may belong to different substructures of the relevant f-structure. The dissertation offers a formalised analysis which takes into account main (most frequent) classes of conjuncts taking part in such coordination.

The dissertation is organised into 3 parts. The first part, assuming no previous knowledge of LFG, introduces necessary basics of this formalism and provides some information about selected phenomena of Polish syntax which are important in the following discussion, including subject-verb agreement and structural case assignment. The second, main, part discusses rich data related to the two selected non-standard coordination phenomena which are the focus of this work and provides formal LFG analyses of coordination of unlike grammatical categories and coordination of different grammatical functions. The third, last, part describes the implementation of the theoretical analyses presented earlier in this work.