Matching Items (7)

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A VOT measurement of the pronunciation of word-initial /p/ by Libyan speakers of English

Description

ABSTRACT

The absence of the consonant sound /p/ in Libyan Arabic leads Libyan speakers of English to pronounce /p/ as /b/. This study examines how Libyan Arabic speakers distinguish the

ABSTRACT

The absence of the consonant sound /p/ in Libyan Arabic leads Libyan speakers of English to pronounce /p/ as /b/. This study examines how Libyan Arabic speakers distinguish the English /p/ and /b/ in their production of L2 English. The study also examines the effect of the production contexts and the learning environment on two groups of Libyan Arabic speakers' attainment of the English /p/ in the USA and Libya. The study collected voice recordings of word-initial /p/ and /b/ in isolated-words, minimal pairs, and sentences in English from both Libyan Arabic speakers and American English speakers. The study also collected Libyan Arabic stop consonants /b/, /t/, /d/, /k/, and /g/ from the Libyan participants. The voice recording data were collected using the WhatsApp mobile application from all participants and the Libyan Arabic participants were also asked to fill an online survey. Using voice onset time (VOT) as a measurement tool, this study measured the English and Libyan Arabic data through Praat software. The findings show that most Libyan Arabic participants distinguish between /p/ and /b/, but they did not have as high VOT averages as the American participants' /p/. It also reveals that the production context, especially in minimal pairs and sentence contexts, has an effect on their participants' production. However, the learning environment does not have an effect on the Libyan participants' pronunciation of /p/ in this study.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014

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Phasehood of wh-questions in modern standard Arabic

Description

Wh-questions have been widely discussed in different languages such as English, Mandarin Chinese, Italian, and Russian, but little attention has been paid to the structure of wh-questions in Modern Standard

Wh-questions have been widely discussed in different languages such as English, Mandarin Chinese, Italian, and Russian, but little attention has been paid to the structure of wh-questions in Modern Standard Arabic (MSA). Thus, this dissertation attempts to analyze the structure of wh-questions using the current frameworks: Minimalism and Cartography.

In the late 1990s, Chomsky established the Minimalist Program which aims to describe the clause structure in as simple and economic mechanism as possible, and he advanced his famous research program to include phase theory, which aims to restrict the syntactic operations. On the other side, Rizzi (1997, 2001) proposed the Cartographic approach. In this approach, Rizzi attempted to analyze the left periphery domain in detail, and suggested the split CP hypothesis. Following those two approaches, Ginsburg (2009) and Totsuka (2015) unified them into one approach and suggested that ForceP, TopicP, and IntP are phasal domain while FocusP, FinP, and WhP are not. An overview of the Chomskyan model and Rizzi’s approach has been provided in Chapter 2. Also, this dissertation discussed the unified approach by Ginsburg (2009) and Totsuka (2015).

In addition to the overview of the general frameworks, this dissertation discussed the clause structure such as the word order, left periphery domain (i.e., CP), and resumption in MSA. Furthermore, Chapter 2 presented the earlier studies on the wh-questions in MSA and highlighted the major gap which this dissertation attempts to fill. In these studies the structure of wh-questions in MSA were mis-analyzed because the surface structure of the nine wh-questions might look the same, but, in fact, they are not. Therefore, this dissertation attempts to (re)study the structure of wh-questions with taking into consideration the resumption and [definiteness].

In Chapter 3, the methodology and corpus analysis, which is used in collecting the wh-questions in MSA, are discussed. Finally, Chapter 4 analyzed the corpus findings based on the unified approach by Ginsburg (2009) and Totsuka (2015) and showed some evidence that man ‘who’ and ayy ‘which’ questions in MSA are in phasal phrase (i.e., IntP) while the rest of wh-questions are not.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2017

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Argument structure in Arabic: lexicon or syntax?

Description

A question that has driven much of the current research in formal syntax is whether it is the lexicon or the syntax that determines the argument structure of a verb.

A question that has driven much of the current research in formal syntax is whether it is the lexicon or the syntax that determines the argument structure of a verb. This dissertation attempts to answer this question with a focus on Arabic, a language that has received little attention in the literature of argument structure. In this dissertation, argument structure realization is examined in relation to three different components, namely the root, the CV-skeleton and the structure around the verb. I argue that argument structure is not determined on a root level in Arabic. I also show that only few CV-skeletons (verb patterns) are associated with certain argument structures. Instead, the burden of determining argument structure lies on elements around the structure of VP. The determinants of inner aspect in Arabic and the relation between eventuality types and argument structure are also examined. A cartographic model is provided to show how elements around the VP play a role in determining the inner aspect. This model also represents a relationship between argument structure and eventuality types. The question of what determines argument structure is further addressed through the investigation of the causative/inchoative alternation in Arabic in light of recent semantic and syntactic accounts. I argue that most Arabic verbs that undergo the alternation are non-agentive change-of-state verbs. Although certain lexical characteristics may account for which verbs alternate and which do not, exceptions within a language and/or across languages do exist. I point to a range of phenomena that can be only explained from syntactic points of view.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Negative polarity items and negative concord in modern standard Arabic

Description

This thesis explores the distribution of certain lexical items in Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) and their relationship with two linguistic phenomena, negative concord (NC) and negative polarity items (NPIs). The

This thesis explores the distribution of certain lexical items in Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) and their relationship with two linguistic phenomena, negative concord (NC) and negative polarity items (NPIs). The present study examines two central questions: the first question investigates whether or not MSA shows the patterns of negative concord languages. The second question concerns the distribution of N-words and NPIs in MSA, and in which environments they appear. To answer the research questions, the thesis uses the framework of generative grammar of Chomsky (1995) and The (Non)veridicality Approach by Giannakidou (1998, 2000, 2002). The data reveal that MSA shows the patterns of strict negative concord languages that are suggested by Giannakidou (2000) in the sense that the negative particle obligatorily co-occurs with the N-words which strengthen the degree of negation, and never lead to a double negation interpretation. Moreover, the data show that there is only one pure NPI which appears optionally in two environments, antiveridical and nonveridical environments, and it is disallowed in veridical environments. On the other hand, the investigated indefinite nouns show a mixed picture since they work differently from their counterparts in Arabic dialects. Their descendants in Arabic dialects appear as NPIs while they tend to be indefinite nouns rather than NPIs in MSA.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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The pronominal system in standard Arabic: strong, clitic and affixal pronouns

Description

This thesis investigates the pronominal system in Standard Arabic. It seeks to unravel the correlation between independent and dependent personal pronouns. Although both pronoun groups are treated as distinct parts

This thesis investigates the pronominal system in Standard Arabic. It seeks to unravel the correlation between independent and dependent personal pronouns. Although both pronoun groups are treated as distinct parts of the lexicon, I argue that dependent pronouns are reduced forms derived from the strong counterparts. This study examines how these forms (reduced and non-reduced) relate to one another phonologically and syntactically. Various analytical tools are utilized including vowel harmony, syllable structure as well as some principles of Distributed Morphology and Chomsky's 1995 Minimalist Program. With regard to the phonological relations, I argue that dependent subject pronouns are generated from their parallel strong forms by omitting the initial syllable. Dependent object pronouns are formed by omitting the first two syllables. The first person singular and third person plural masculine subject pronouns are suppletive forms completing the paradigm. They are not derived by reduction from their full counterparts. After investigating the distributional properties of both sets of pronouns, I propose a bipartite subcategorization of reduced pronominals into two subclasses: clitics and affixes. Clitics surface in positions in which strong pronouns cannot occur. As for affixes, they are used to mark verb-argument agreement. In light of these positions, I argue that dependent subject pronouns are always affixes while dependent object pronouns are always clitics. Clitics function as syntactically independent units which combine with hosts at the phonological phase as a result of their prosodic deficiency while affixes associate with hosts when features are valued during a sentence derivation.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2013

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Arabic-English code switching in the Egyptian talk show Shabab Beek

Description

This sociolinguistic study examines the various functions of Arabic-English code switching in the Egyptian talk show ‘Shabab Beek (literally: Young by You; communicatively: The Young Speak)’. In addition, this study

This sociolinguistic study examines the various functions of Arabic-English code switching in the Egyptian talk show ‘Shabab Beek (literally: Young by You; communicatively: The Young Speak)’. In addition, this study investigates the syntactic categories and types of switches to English. The data consist of approximately four hours and forty-five minutes of YouTube videos of the talk show in which code switching to English occurred. The videos are collected from six episodes of the show that were aired in October 2010. The show featured three categories of speakers, show hosts, guests, and callers. The findings show that most of the switches were produced by show hosts and guests while callers produced very few switches due perhaps to the limited number of phone calls received in the selected episodes. The speakers mostly used nouns when they switched to English. Nouns are followed by adjectives and noun phrases. The most prevalent type of switches in the data is tag switches followed by intrasentential and intersentential switches, which occurred rarely. Finally, analysis revealed eight functions of code switching in the data. These are difficulty retrieving an Arabic expression, quotation, euphemism, reiteration, message qualification, academic or technical terms, association with certain domains, and objectivization.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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Ideologies in four Saudi newspapers: a critical discourse analysis

Description

This study offers a critical discourse analysis of four Saudi newspapers, examining their coverage of two particular incidents relating to the Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention

This study offers a critical discourse analysis of four Saudi newspapers, examining their coverage of two particular incidents relating to the Committee for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Vice. Following van Dijk’s framework, the study examines the ideological role of language within media discourse. The tools of analysis include headlines, leads, lexical choices, reported speech, unnamed sources, and silenced texts. The findings of the study show that there are differences between the four newspapers in the coverage of the two incidents. The analysis also reveals different ideological attitudes among writers.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016