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TitleOn the (non-)discreteness of morphological categories with special reference to affix categories in Afrikaans
AuthorSavini, Marina
SubjectAfrikaans language -- Morphology
SubjectAfrikaans language -- Affixes
Format1 online resource (v, 361 leaves)
AbstractText in English
AbstractUnderlying many formal approaches to linguistics is the fundamental, philosophical assumption that categories are discrete entities. This assumption also underlies two contemporary formal approaches to morphology which seek to account for the stress and distributional properties of derivational affixes in complex words. A study of these two approaches, the level-ordering and the category distinction approaches, reveals that both are faced with the same set of counterexamples in English. Specifically, they are faced with certain derivational affixes which display uncharacteristic distributional properties. In order to deal with such affixes the approaches resort to a variety of ad hoc mechanisms whose sole purpose is to save them from refutation. The argument offered in this thesis is that the problem with both approaches lies with the background assumption about categories which underlies their work. There is, however, an alternative conception of the nature of categories that has been widely supported by experimental research in the field of cognitive psychology, viz. that categories are non-discrete or continuous entities which are distributed along a continuum. In the thesis it is argued that, by adopting this conception of categories, a more adequate account can be given of the gradient differences between category members both inter- and intra-categorially. This argument will be illustrated with specific reference to affix categories in Afrikaans.
AbstractLinguistics and Modern Languages
AbstractD. Litt. et Phil. (Linguistics)
IdentifierSavini, Marina (1991) On the (non-)discreteness of morphological categories with special reference to affix categories in Afrikaans, University of South Africa, Pretoria,