A Formal Syntactic Analysis of Complex-Path Motion Predicates in Ghanaian Student Pidgin (GSP)

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This is the accompanying data for a dissertation of the same title which formalizes the encoding of motion predicates in GSP and proposes a unified theory which captures the generalizations in the phenomena and accounts for language-specific...

Version 1.0 - published on 30 Jul 2019 doi:10.4231/NTA1-N446 - cite this Archived on 30 Jun 2019

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This project is part of a larger crosslinguistic study of motion predicates within spoken and signed languages with the aim of formalizing the way motion events are encoded in the various languages under study and proposing a unified theory which can (both) capture the generalizations in the phenomena and account for language specific variation. This publication focuses on Ghanaian Student Pidgin (GSP), which is an Expanded Pidgin spoken by students in High Schools and Colleges across Ghana. The data used for the study (and published here) consist of audio recordings of elicitation sessions with individual participants. Data were elicited from each participant using an Instrument which consisted of a battery of 175 animated video-clips designed to elicit and contrast the set of parameters (i.e. path, telicity, agentivity and resultative) relevant to the study. The video-clips were administered to the participants by means of a randomized self-paced application. The results of the study show that complex-path motion predicates in GSP are expressed with Serial Verb Constructions (SVCs) which are in a layered complementation structure in the fashion proposed by Larson (1991) with each verb (phrase) corresponding to a subevent within the larger motion predicate.

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