Gramatke, Astrid (2019). Monte Desann - Serial Verb Constructions in Kreol Seselwa. PhD thesis, Universität zu Köln.


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This dissertation analyses and discusses the phenomenon of Serial Verb Constructions (SVCs) in Kreol Seselwa (KS), a Creole Language spoken on the Seychelles. This empirical study shows that SVCs in KS 1) are part of KS grammar 2) can be located on a continuum 3) have different distributions 4) are subject to variation and 5) are adjunction structures. In the first part, a description of Kreol Seselwa, its history, sociolinguistic situation and selected aspects of its grammar is provided. Furthermore, a definition and typology of SVCs as well as an overview of different suggestions concerning their syntactic nature is presented. The first part closes with a summary of the previous research that has been conducted on SVCs in KS. The second part first describes the methodology of the current study and then depicts and analyses all occurrences of SVCs in the different types of collected data. Part three discusses and concludes the results of the data analysis in light of the theories proposed in the first part. It is shown that SVCs are indeed part of KS grammar as the structures that were present in the data corpus conform to the definition and criteria of SVCs. Even though KS does not exhibit the full array of the semantic types of SVCs proposed in the literature, prototypical formal as well as functional SVCs can be found in the language. However, also non-prototypical structures surface and, hence, it is argued that a continuum approach to SVCs is able to capture KS serials. In the thesis, the continuum approach is extended beyond SVCs to include neighboring syntactic phenomena of coordination and complementation, grammaticalization and/or lexicalization in KS. Furthermore, it is concluded that the distribution, frequency and variation of SVCs is dependent on the type of modality (written or oral language), on the type of data (produced or accepted speech) and finally on the age of the participants and written texts (old or young). Finally, it is argued that KS SVCs most likely have to be analyzed as adjunction structures. With regards to argument sharing it is shown that present accounts cannot fully capture the nature of subjects in KS SVCs and it is discussed as to whether these could be accounted for if a sideward movement analysis is adopted.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD thesis)
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
Gramatke, Astridastrid.gramatke@uni-koeln.deUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-99971
Date: 2019
Language: English
Faculty: Faculty of Arts and Humanities
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Fächergruppe 5: Moderne Sprachen und Kulturen > Englisches Seminar I
Subjects: Language, Linguistics
Other languages
Uncontrolled Keywords:
Serial Verb ConstructionsUNSPECIFIED
Generative GrammarUNSPECIFIED
Language ContactUNSPECIFIED
Minimalist ProgramUNSPECIFIED
Date of oral exam: 13 December 2018
NameAcademic Title
Adone, DanyProf. Dr.
Baptista, MarlyseProf. Dr.
Refereed: Yes


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