The parts of speech problem


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The parts of speech problem

  1. 1. THE PARTS OF SPEECH PROBLEM. <ul><li>WORD CLASSES </li></ul><ul><li>Definition </li></ul><ul><li>Principles of Classification </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Classical (logical-inflectional) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Functional –Formal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Distributional </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Complex </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Notional word-classes vs. functional word-classes </li></ul>
  2. 2. <ul><li>The parts of speech are </li></ul><ul><li>classes of words, </li></ul><ul><li>all the members of these classes having certain characteristics in common </li></ul><ul><li>which distinguish them from the members of other classes. </li></ul><ul><li>L. M.Volkova </li></ul>
  3. 3. The parts of speech are <ul><li>Are lexico-grammatical classes of words possessing </li></ul><ul><li>A certain common (abstract, categorical) meaning </li></ul><ul><li>The system of grammatical categories typical of this class </li></ul><ul><li>Peculiarities of syntactic function </li></ul><ul><li>Special types of word-form derivation </li></ul><ul><li>Olga Sergeyevna Akhmanova </li></ul>
  4. 4. Word Class <ul><li>refers to a group of words which have similar functions. </li></ul><ul><li>Word classes are divided into open classes and closed classes. </li></ul><ul><li>Cambridge Grammar of English 2007 </li></ul>
  5. 5. Open classes <ul><li>include lexical words such as </li></ul><ul><ul><li>nouns (dinner, place, Francis), </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>verbs (meet, drive, go, pick), </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>adjectives (old, angry, helpful), </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>adverbs (quickly, carefully, fast). </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Open classes admit new words. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Closed classes <ul><li>have limited membership. They include function words such as </li></ul><ul><ul><li>pronouns (it, he, who, anybody, one), </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>determiners (a, the, that, some, each, several), </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>modal verbs (may, could, must), </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>auxiliary verbs (be, have, do), </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>conjunctions (and, but, if, unless), </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>prepositions (in, at, of, by, with). </li></ul></ul><ul><li>They do not admit new words. </li></ul>
  7. 7. The problem of word classification into parts of speech <ul><li>still remains one of the most controversial problems in modern linguistics. </li></ul><ul><li>There are four approaches to the problem: </li></ul><ul><li>Classical (logical-inflectional) </li></ul><ul><li>Functional-formal </li></ul><ul><li>Distributional </li></ul><ul><li>Complex </li></ul>
  8. 8. The Classical (logical-inflectional) Principles of Classification (Prescriptive Grammarians) <ul><li>Prescriptive grammarians, who treated Latin as an ideal language, described English in terms of Latin forms and Latin grammatical constraints. </li></ul><ul><li>e.g. the Latin noun paradigm for nouns in English </li></ul><ul><li>Nominative: the house </li></ul><ul><li>Genitive: of the house </li></ul><ul><li>Dative: to the house </li></ul><ul><li>Accusative: the house </li></ul><ul><li>Ablative: in, at, by, or from the house </li></ul><ul><li>Vocative: O house </li></ul>
  9. 9. The Classical (logical-inflectional) Classification <ul><li>Words were divided dichotomically </li></ul><ul><li>declinable and indeclinable </li></ul><ul><li>parts of speech. </li></ul><ul><li>nouns, pronouns, adverbs, prepositions </li></ul><ul><li>verbs, participles, conjunctions, interjections, </li></ul><ul><li>adjectives articles </li></ul>
  10. 10. The Classical (logical-inflectional) Classification <ul><li>The underlying principle of classification was form , which, as can be seen from their treatment of the English noun, was not only morphologic but also syntactic. </li></ul><ul><li>The logical-inflectional classification is quite successful for Latin but it cannot be applied to the English language because the principle of declinability/indeclinability is not relevant for analytical languages. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Functional –Formal Principles of Classification ( Non-Structural Descriptive Grammarians ) <ul><li>Henry Sweet (1892), a prescriptivist divided words into </li></ul>Indeclinables ( particles ): adverb, preposition, conjunction, interjection. Declinables ( nominative ): noun-words (noun, noun-pronoun, noun-numeral, infinitive, gerund), adjective-words (adjective, adjective-pronoun, adjective-numeral, participle), verb (finite verb), verbals (infinitive, gerund, participle)
  12. 12. Functional –Formal Principles of Classification ( Non-Structural Descriptive Grammarians ) <ul><li>Henry Sweet speaks of three principles of classification: form, meaning, and function. </li></ul><ul><li>However, the results of his classification of parts of speech into nominative and particles is a division based on form. </li></ul><ul><li>Only within the class we can see the operation of the principle of function. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Functional-Formal Principles of Classification ( Non-Structural Descriptive Grammarians ) <ul><li>Otto Jespersen, a descriptivist, (1935) </li></ul><ul><li>“ In my opinion everything should be kept in view, form, function and meaning...” </li></ul><ul><li>He distinguishes: </li></ul><ul><li>substantives, </li></ul><ul><li>adjectives, </li></ul><ul><li>pronouns, </li></ul><ul><li>verbs, </li></ul><ul><li>particles (adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, interjections). </li></ul>
  14. 14. Functional-Formal Principles of Classification ( Non-Structural Descriptive Grammarians ) <ul><li>Otto Jespersen </li></ul><ul><li>separates nouns (which he calls substantives) from noun-words, a class of words distinguished on the basis of function – a noun word is a word that can function as a noun; </li></ul><ul><li>distinguishes pronouns as a separate part of speech, thus isolating them from Henry Sweet’s noun-words and adjective-words. </li></ul><ul><li>Although the scholar speaks of form, function and meaning, in practice he gives preference to form. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Distributional Principles of Classification ( Structural Descriptive Grammarians ) <ul><li>Charles Fries (1956) </li></ul><ul><li>rejected the traditional principle of classification of words into parts of speech </li></ul><ul><li>replaced it with the methods of distributional analysis and substitution. </li></ul><ul><li>The distribution of a word is the position of a word in the sentence ( the ability of words to combine with other words of different types). At the same time, the lexical meaning of words was not taken into account. </li></ul>
  16. 16. Charles Fries’s substitution frames <ul><li>Frame A </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>1 2 3 4 </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>The concert was good (always). </li></ul><ul><li>Frame B </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>1 2 1 4 </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>The clerk remembered the tax (suddenly). </li></ul><ul><li>Frame C </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>1 2 4 </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>The team went there. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Charles Fries’s classification <ul><li>4 major classes of words </li></ul><ul><li>They contain 67% of total instances of the vocabulary </li></ul><ul><li>15 form-classes </li></ul><ul><li>These function words (numbering 154 in all) make up a third of the recorded material. </li></ul>
  18. 18. 4 major classes of words <ul><li>Class 1 words are words that can substitute for concert (e.g. food, coffee, taste , etc.) and words that can substitute for clerk, tax and team . </li></ul><ul><li>Class 2 words are words that can substitute for was, remembered and went ; </li></ul><ul><li>Class 3 words are words that can substitute for good. </li></ul><ul><li>Class 4 words are words that can fill the position of there . </li></ul>
  19. 19. 15 form-classes <ul><li>Group A words (determiners); </li></ul><ul><li>Group B (modal verbs); </li></ul><ul><li>Group C (the negative particle “not”); </li></ul><ul><li>Group D (adverbs of degree); </li></ul><ul><li>Group E (coordinating conjunctions); </li></ul><ul><li>Group F (prepositions); </li></ul><ul><li>Group G (the auxiliary verb “to”) </li></ul><ul><li>Group H (the introductory “there”); </li></ul><ul><li>Group I (interrogative pronouns and adverbs); </li></ul><ul><li>Group J (subordinating conjunctions); </li></ul><ul><li>Group K (interjections); </li></ul><ul><li>Group L (the words “yes” and “no”); </li></ul><ul><li>Group M (the so-called attention-giving signals: look, say, listen); </li></ul><ul><li>Group N (the word “please”); </li></ul><ul><li>Group O (the forms “let us”, “lets” in request sentences). </li></ul>
  20. 20. pro et contra <ul><li>Charles Fries was the first linguist to pay attention to some of function words (form-classes) peculiarities. </li></ul><ul><li>He used the principle of function, or combinability (the position of a word in the sentence is the syntactic function of word). </li></ul><ul><li>Not all relevant positions were tested. </li></ul><ul><li>His functional classes are very much broken into small groups. </li></ul><ul><li>Being deprived of meaning, his word-classes are “faceless”, i.e. they have no character. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Complex Principles of Classification (Post-Structural Traditional Grammar) <ul><li>Parts of speech are discriminated according to three criteria: semantic, formal and functional. </li></ul><ul><li>The semantic criterion presupposes the grammatical meaning of the whole class of words (general grammatical meaning). </li></ul><ul><li>The formal criterion reveals paradigmatic properties: relevant grammatical categories, the form of the words, their specific inflectional and derivational features. </li></ul><ul><li>The functional criterion concerns the syntactic function of words in the sentence and their combinability in the phrase. </li></ul>
  22. 22. When characterizing any part of speech <ul><li>we are to describe: a) its semantics; b) its morphological features; c) its syntactic peculiarities. </li></ul><ul><li>The lexemes of a part of speech are united by their grammatical meaning . </li></ul><ul><li>This meaning is a category forming one. Therefore, it is referred to as categorical meaning. </li></ul><ul><li>As categorical meaning is derived from lexemes, it is often called lexico-grammatical meaning and finds outward expression in morphological forms. These outward features are a formal criterion of classification. </li></ul><ul><li>The functional criterion concerns the syntactic role of a word in the sentence and combinability in the phrase. </li></ul>
  23. 23. All the words of the language are divided into: <ul><li>notional words </li></ul><ul><li>are those denoting things, objects, notions, qualities, etc. – words with the corresponding references in the objective reality – </li></ul><ul><li>function words, or grammatical words </li></ul><ul><li>are those having no references of their own in the objective reality; most of them are used only as grammatical means to form up and frame utterances </li></ul>
  24. 24. <ul><li>Notional words </li></ul><ul><li>nouns, </li></ul><ul><li>pronouns, </li></ul><ul><li>numerals, </li></ul><ul><li>verbs, </li></ul><ul><li>adjectives, </li></ul><ul><li>adverbs. </li></ul><ul><li>The notional parts of speech present open classes: the number of items constituting the notional word-classes is not limited </li></ul><ul><li>Function word s </li></ul><ul><li>articles, </li></ul><ul><li>particles, </li></ul><ul><li>prepositions, </li></ul><ul><li>conjunctions, </li></ul><ul><li>modal words, </li></ul><ul><li>the interjection. </li></ul><ul><li>The functional parts of speech present closed classes: the number of items constituting the functional word-classes is limited and can be given by the list. </li></ul>
  25. 25. The contrast Notional word-classes vs. Functional word-classes <ul><li>does not suggest that functional word-classes are devoid of content. </li></ul><ul><li>As suggested by B.Khaimovich and B.Rogovskaya (1967), function words can be called semi-notional. This distinction is to some extent reflected in the phenomenon of substitution: notional words usually have substitutes: </li></ul>
  26. 26. <ul><li>I saw a cat in the street. It was shivering with cold. </li></ul><ul><li>He gave me an interesting book. vs. He gave me this book. </li></ul><ul><li>John has ten friends. vs. John has many friends. </li></ul><ul><li>He speaks English better than you do . </li></ul><ul><li>She lay down. Her eyes closed . It was thus (i.e. in this manner) that Robert saw her. </li></ul>
  27. 27. Function words <ul><li>are to ‘service’ the notional words </li></ul><ul><li>by restricting the reference of a notional word (the article), </li></ul><ul><li>by substituting for them (the pronoun), </li></ul><ul><li>by expressing a relation between notional words or predications (the preposition and the conjunction), </li></ul><ul><li>by intensifying the meaning of a notional word (the particle). </li></ul><ul><li>As for the modal words and interjections, they function as restrictors of predications: modal words help to remove the directness of a statement or express the presence or absence of an obligation </li></ul><ul><li>interjections serve to colour our statement emotionally. </li></ul>
  28. 28. <ul><li>A </li></ul><ul><li>The dog is man’s best friend ( the dog refers to the whole class ). </li></ul><ul><li>I need a dog ( a dog refers to an unspecified member of the class ). </li></ul><ul><li>I saw a dog running across the street ( a dog refers to a specific, i.e. concrete member of the class ). </li></ul><ul><li>The dog came to our house again ( the dog refers to a particular member of the class: you know what dog I’m talking about ). </li></ul><ul><li>B </li></ul><ul><li>He was a member of a famous golf club. </li></ul><ul><li>I came here in 1972 and I have lived here ever since. </li></ul>
  29. 29. <ul><li>C </li></ul><ul><li>Even Anthony enjoyed it. </li></ul><ul><li>The video is to be used for teaching purposes only . </li></ul><ul><li>D </li></ul><ul><li>There are perhaps fifty women here. </li></ul><ul><li>If nothing is done, there will certainly be an economic crisis. </li></ul><ul><li>E </li></ul><ul><li>“ He refused to marry her the next day!” “ Oh!” said Scarlett, her hopes dashed (M. Mitchell). </li></ul><ul><li>Oh dear , I’m late. </li></ul>
  30. 30. The most important of all the parts of speech <ul><li>the noun and the verb </li></ul><ul><li>they form the nucleus of the sentence, i.e. a subject-predicate structure. </li></ul><ul><li>However, of the two parts of speech, the central role in the sentence is played by the verb: it is ‘responsible’ for both its meaning and structure. </li></ul><ul><li>e.g. Peter broke the window </li></ul>
  31. 31. <ul><li>The verb does not only shape the semantic and syntactic structures but also expresses grammatical information, without which the sentence would only have a propositional structure. </li></ul><ul><li>Cf. Peter broke the window (sentence) - Peter + break + the window (proposition). </li></ul>
  32. 32. The role of the noun <ul><li>in the semantic (propositional) structure the noun performs the role of a participant; </li></ul><ul><li>in the syntactic structure the noun is a constituent. </li></ul><ul><li>in both types of structure the noun serves as a building-block . </li></ul><ul><li>Although it is the verb that is responsible for the form of the sentence, the noun determines the person and the number of the verb: </li></ul><ul><li>The student is in the lecture-room vs. The students are in the lecture room. </li></ul>
  33. 33. <ul><li>The grammatical information which turns a proposition into a sentence is: person, number, tense, aspect, voice, mood, order . </li></ul>
  34. 34. The remaining notional parts of speech <ul><li>are satellites of </li></ul><ul><ul><li>the noun (adjective, numeral) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>the verb (adverb) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>they serve as their restrictors, or concretizers. </li></ul>
  35. 35. The functional parts of speech <ul><li>some serve as satellites of the noun (article, pronoun, preposition), </li></ul><ul><li>others serve as satellites of the verb (modal words, interjections). </li></ul><ul><li>Some functional parts of speech – the conjunction, the particle – serve two masters – the noun and the verb. </li></ul>
  36. 36. Task for Tutorial 5 <ul><li>Parts of Speech, their classification. Different approaches to classifying words into parts of speech. </li></ul><ul><li>The definition of parts of speech. Different points of view on the problem. </li></ul><ul><li>The theories of Parts of Speech. </li></ul><ul><li>The Classical (logical-inflectional) Principles of Words Classification (Prescriptive Grammarians). The main reasons of impossibility to apply those principles to the English language </li></ul><ul><li>H. Sweet’s classification of words into parts of speech. Three criteria of the classification. O. Jesperson’s classification. </li></ul><ul><li>Distributional Principles of Classification. Ch. Fries’s frames. </li></ul><ul><li>Complex Principles of Classification (Post-Structural Traditional Grammar), criteria in describing parts of speech. </li></ul><ul><li>The contrast Notional word-classes vs. Functional word-classes </li></ul><ul><li>Recommended Literature. </li></ul><ul><li>Blokh M.Y. Chapter 3-4, p. 27-48. </li></ul><ul><li>Ilyish B.A. p. 27-35. </li></ul><ul><li>Irtenyeva N.F. et alia, p. 41-46, 53-58. </li></ul><ul><li>Иванова И.П. et alia стр. 11-20. </li></ul><ul><li>Readings. p. 41-57. </li></ul><ul><li>Practical Assignment: </li></ul><ul><li>Write out from the dictionary of Linguistics definitions of the following terms: part of speech, form, function, declinable, particle, . </li></ul><ul><li>Make a gist of different approaches to the problem of parts of speech (Readings): their specification of each theory, strong and weak sides of their appliance to the English language. </li></ul>