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Project Topic:

ASPECTS OF KONO VERB PHRASE

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 Format: MS WORD ::   Chapters: 1 - 5 ::   Pages: 115 ::   Attributes: Table of content  ::   303 people found this useful

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NIGERIAN/AFRICAN LANGUAGES UNDERGRADUATE PROJECT TOPICS, RESEARCH WORKS AND MATERIALS

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION 

GENERAL BACKGROUND

This research project examines the verb-phrase of Kono language with emphasis on the structure of verb phrase of the language under GB theory. Kono language is spoken in Kauru Local Government in Kaduna State.

This chapter basically focus on the historical background of Kono people, the geographical location of its speakers, the socio-cultural, profile and the genetic classification of the language.

1.1     HISTORICAL BACKGROUND

          Kono is a language spoken in Kauru Local Government Area of Kaduna State. Kono language is spoken by small number of people in Kauru, the native speaker of Kono called themselves “Jawuzura” they are called Konu or Kwono by the Hausa speakers.

          According to oral history, Kono speaker had their origin from a deep forest from the northern part of Kaduna. The place is surrounded by a lot of rocks, people of Kono believe that they are comfortable, until the advent of the British Colonial master who brought Christian religion through a female missionary, the advent of this missionary brought a lot of changes to kono speech community. This includes school, culture, mode of dressing and christian religion.

1.2     SOCIO – CULTURAL PROFILES

Kono speech community is enriched with beautiful culture in terms of marriage, dressing, occupation, religion, festival and naming ceremony.

1.2.1           OCCUPATION OF KONO PEOPLE

Kono speech community is predominantly farming and hunting community. Kono people are subsistence farmers, growing sugar-cane as their major crop, they also grow some food crops like yam, millet, corn, cassava etc. Kono people is also bless with a yam called “Morongo” this yam did not grow by anybody it grows by itself.

Kono people also engage in hunting and some trading, but these are of lesser importance than agriculture.

1.2.2  MARRIAGE

          Kono speech community marriage is done according to their culture, they believe that lazy man cannot marry to their daughter even in the same community, in Kono community before a man can be marry to their daughter after their proposal, the man must provide a wood crave and axe to the girl he desire to marry, this indicate that she will bring firewood home from the farm for cooking.

          Also the man that intend to marry their daughter must farm for the family of his wife before and after their marriage in every raining season.

1.2.3           RELIGION

          Christian missionaries were the first religious activists to visit Kono speech community. For this reason Kono speakers are mainly Christians, before the advent of Christian missionaries, Kono speech community practice traditional religion.

1.2.4           FESTIVALS

          Kono speech community has a festival called “Burkana” means “King/Creator”. As a Christian community the peculiar festival to Kono people is Christmas, where every citizen of kono community from different parts of the country come together to celebrate Christmas.

1.3     GEOGRAPHICAL LOCATION

          Kono language is spoken in Kauru Local Government Area of Kaduna State. This language Kono is found between Padan-Kono and Gbure speech community in Kauru Local Government in Kaduna North.

1.4 GENETIC CLASSIFICATION OF KONO

Ruhlen (1987:1) opines that the idea that group of language that share certain systematic resemblance have inherited those similarities from a common origin is the basis for genetic classification.

Genetic classification could be inform of a tree diagram showing the origin of a language and how it is genetically related to other languages. Kono language belongs to the group of Kainji under the Benue-Congo group of Niger-Congo language family.

 

1.5     SCOPE OF THE STUDY

          The purpose of this study is to closely examine the verb phrase aspect of Kono language. In doing this, the researcher will discuss what verb phrase is, types of verbs that are attested in Kono language. Also an insight was given to the phrase structure rule that can capture the possible verb phrase in this language.

          The analysis and exemplification of verb phrase and possible phrase structure rule in Kono language form the major items of this research work.

1.6     ORGANIZATION OF THE STUDY

          This research project will be in five chapters. Chapter one is an introductory part focusing on the historical background of Kono people, their socio – cultural profile and their genetic tree diagram. It also presents the data analysis, data collection, scope and organization of the study including the theoretical frame work and the brief review of the chosen framework. Chapter two will treat the basic syntactic concepts while chapter three will be on the verb, the nature of verbs and the types of verb phrase attested in Kono language. Chapter four will look into the Transformational Process of Syntax such as Focusing and Pasivization etc.

          The last chapter, chapter five will be discussed in forms of summary, conclusion and recommendations.

1.7     THEORETICAL FRAMEWORKS

          The theoretical framework that would be adopted in this research project is the Government and Binding Theory (GB Theory). This is intended to serve as substitute for the previously existing theory known as Transformational Generative Grammar (TGG).

1.8     DATA COLLECTION

          The data used in this research project were gathered through informant method which is also known as contact method. Data elicitation was carried out through direct interview from the language helpers, with audio cassette recorded; frame technique was also employed during data collection.

          The information about the informants (language helpers) used for this research work is given below:

Informant 1:        Mrs. Asabe Luka

Occupation:                   Business Woman

Age:                      58years

Religion:               Christianity

No of years lived in the village:         25years

Other languages spoken:                   Hausa and English

Informant 2:        Miss Martha Luka

Occupation:                   Student

Age:                      25years

Religion:               Christianity

No of years lived in the village:         10years

Other languages spoken:                   Hausa and English

Informant 3:        Miss. Sarah Luka

Occupation:                   Student

Age:                      21years

Religion:               Christianity

No of years lived in the village:         6years

Other languages spoken:                   Hausa and English

1.9     DATA ANALYSIS

          The Ibadan 400 word list contains list of words in English language in which equivalent meaning in Kono language are supplied by an informant.

          The frame technique is also used in this project. It is framing of sentences in English language in which the informant supplies their meaning in kono language.

          This is constructed to have the mechanism of producing or processing grammatically acceptable sentences in a given language.  The frame technique enables us to determine the actual underlying form of words or constituents and possible syntactic classes to which a word belongs in Kono language.

 

1.10     BRIEF REVIEW OF THE CHOSEN FRAME WORK

          The Government and Binding Theory (GB Theory) was proposed by Noam Chomsky and the work was published in 1988. The modules were derived from theories of universal grammar which posits multiple levels of representation related by the transformational rules (move & Cook, 1988). Some parts of this syntactic model have been modified by Chomsky (1988).

          Government and Binding Theory is an interlocking organizing of sub-theories which interact in many different ways. There is no one of the theory that can be isolated from the rest.

These sub – theories are:

  1.           X – bar theory
  2.         Theta (θ) theory
  3. Binding Theory 
  4. Control theory
  5.             Government Theory
  6.   Case Theory
  7.  Bounding theory

Government and Binding Theory is known as principle and parameters theory which accounts for variation of headedness across languages. Therefore, it is safe to say that the grammar of a language is determined by the appropriate parameter setting and its lexicon (Cook, 1988). The different sub – theories under Government and Binding Theory are discussed below:

1.10.1         X – BAR THEORY (X)

          The X – bar theory also recognized as X – theory defines possible phrase structure configurations in language generally. The central notion is that each of the major lexical categories (Adjective, Preposition, Verb and Noun) is the head of a structure dominated e.g. Noun: Noun phrase, Verb: Verb Phrase etc (Cook, 1988).

          Chomsky (1986) in this analysis says that all the X – bar convention requires that every maximal projection (MP) has a specifier of XP core, the core consists of the head Xo and the complement (which can be a maximal projection itself).

          Then it safe to say that the maximal projection (x - bar) is another name for full phrasal category associated with a particular lexical category as the head of the phrase. This theory is represented by this sequence.

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