Gikuyu verbal extensions:a minimalist analysis
Waweru, Martin Mburu
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The purpose of this study was to investigate the Gikuyu verbal extensions: their individual occurrence and their co-occurrences. Gikuyu just like other Bantu languages, has a rich and complex morphology. The complexity is more evident in derivational morphology than inflectional morphology. A feature that makes derivational morphology complex is the concatenations of the derivational affixes such as the verbal extensions under investigation in this study. The five affixes, namely the causative, the applicative, the passive, the reciprocal and the reversive were described and analysed individually and then they were concatenated. The individual occurrences and the co-occurrences were then analysed using the Minimalist Program, the theoretical framework used in the study. The theory has been revised extensively but it is the 1995 version that showed a higher degree of explanatory adequacy in analysingGildiyii verbal extensions. The data for the study was in form of four hundred verbs. The verbs were then classified according to their transitivity status. The concatenations of the verbal extensions revealed that they are determined by the interaction of morphology, semantics and syntax, but occasionally semantics overrides the other two. The thesis is divided into seven chapters. Chapter one gives the preliminary details of the research, that is, the research problem, the objectives and the background to the problem. Chapter two has literature on studies in Bantu, Gildiyii and on the theoretical framework. In chapter three, the study discusses the methodology used. Chapter four is the first of the analysis and description chapters. It discusses the causative, the applicative and the reversive. In chapter five, the reciprocal and the passive are discussed. Chapter six has the description and the analysis of the co-occurrences of the Gildiyii verbal extension. The last chapter gives the conclusion of the study and areas for further research.