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|Title: ||The structure of DP in Central Kurdish|
|Authors: ||Tahir, Rebwar Shafie|
|Issue Date: ||2018 |
|Publisher: ||Newcastle University|
|Abstract: ||This thesis investigates the syntactic structure of DP (determiner phrase) in Central Kurdish
within the Minimalist Program (Chomsky 1995, and subsequent work). It explores the syntax
of functional categories including inflectional elements such as Izafe, number, definite and
indefinite markers. The study examines the structural relation between these functional
categories and the noun, shedding new light on the syntax of DP in a language which has not
so far been well investigated. Using the Minimalist derivational theory, this thesis explores the
derivation of extended nominal projections in Central Kurdish.
The study provides a detailed account of the Izafe construction. I argue that Izafe triggers
movement of NP to a position above the modifier(s), and also marks agreement in definiteness.
Two types of Izafe are recognized: AP Izafe and NP Izafe. While AP Izafe agrees in definiteness
with D realized by the definite article, NP Izafe shows Case agreement with a modifying DP
complement. I argue that such agreement relations are established by Chomsky’s (2000, 2001)
probe/goal agreement operation, except that the agreement relations occur upwards, the probe
being c-commanded by the goal (contra Chomsky 2000, 2001, but in line with Baker 2008;
Wurmbrand 2012; Zeijlstra 2012).
Given that Central Kurdish has two definite articles, -eke and –e, which occur on different sides
of number at spell-out, I argue that there are two DP layers projected, with the functional
projection of number (NumP) intermediate between them. The higher D is realized by -e and
the lower D by –eke. The featural make-up of the lower D bears uniqueness and specificity (the
two features subsumed under definiteness), while the higher D carries only specificity. The
thesis also argues that the inflection –êk is a marker of indefiniteness realized by the higher D
category, and is not merely a grammaticalized diachronic remnant of the numeral yêk ‘one’ to
mark singularity, as claimed by Lyons (1999: 95).
The analysis also accounts for the syntax of number morphology and quantification in Central
Kurdish. As a functional category, number is argued to project NumP realized by the inflection
-an. Based on the morpheme order, NumP seems to take scope over DP, a phenomenon challenging
the well-established cross-linguistic generalization that D scopes over NumP (Rijkhoff 2002; Ritter
1991). Assuming that scopal relations among functional categories are structurally represented, the
peculiar hierarchical relation between DP and NumP in Central Kurdish poses a problem for
Baker’s (1985, 1988) Mirror Principle, as well. However, I provide evidence that the projection of
number (NumP) falls under the scope of another DP projection headed by a D which is
morphologically realized in some situations by the definite marker –e.
Two types of quantifiers are distinguished: definite and indefinite. This division offers a principled
account of quantifiers, providing empirical evidence that they are realized by two structurally
distinct functional categories: one above and the other below the DP projection.|
|Description: ||PhD Thesis|
|Appears in Collections:||School of English Literature, Language and Linguistics|
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