LSAL 64: Theoretical Issues in the Grammar of Kikamba: A Bantu Language

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Theoretical Issues in the Grammar of Kikamba: A Bantu Language

Angelina Nduku Kioko

This study describes some key aspects of Kikamba grammar in the context of advances in theoretical linguistics. As a preliminary to the main discussion, the phonology, morphology and syntax of the language are outlined in chapter 2. The book then describes in detail the agreement system, chapter 3; the pronominal system, chapter 4; the passive construction, chapter 5; and the applicative construction, chapter 6; in the light of theoretical literature falling within the Government and Binding, Relational Grammar and Lexical Functional Grammar.

The application of the tenets of these theories to the description of the Kikamba data leaves some varieties of structures unaccounted for. In particular it is argued that, to account for all the varieties of the passive construction observed in Kikamba, we need to look at the basic features of the passive verb. The passive verb needs to be one that has an inherent argument and one that can take an expletive subject. Similarly, the analysis of the applicative construction points to the need to recognize two functions of the applied affix: a transitivizing function and a crossreferencing function. Object creation is shown to be a consequence and not a function of the cross-referencing use of the applied affix.

ISBN 9783895864858. LINCOM Studies in African Linguistics 64. 190pp. .2005.

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