College of Humanities and Social Sciences

linguistics research brownbag

Tuesday, March 20, 2018 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
Robinson Hall A, #447

This week: Phd proposal by Mashael Al-Aloula.  The Emergence of a Progressive Aspect in Najdi Arabic.

The active participle [qaʕid] ‘sitting’ has come to express the progressive aspect in Najdi Arabic (NA). Research into NA in general, and the expression of progressivity in particular is very limited and inconclusive. Several researchers have described the different uses of the active participle in spoken Arabic varieties (Al-Najjar, 1991; Brustad, 2000; Eades & Persson, 2013; Jarad, 2015). Al-Aloula (2017) analyzed native-speakers’ acceptability of different instances of the [qaʕid] progressive in NA. The results suggested that the construction is broadening its usage distribution. [qaʕid] is undergoing gramaticalization and semantic bleaching (loss of original meaning). Moreover, results indicate that age plays a significant role in its use, indicating that gramaticalization is underway (Al-Aloula, 2017). Aside from Al-Aloula (2017), no study has closely examined this emerging construction in NA. This research aims to contribute to our understanding of how [qaʕid] has come to express the progressive aspect in NA. Native speakers of NA will participate in a grammaticality judgment task that will shed some light on the spreading of [qaʕid] to express the progressive aspect. Finally, it will examine the use of [qaʕid] in authentic NA speech, in an attempt to understand the type of predicates used with [qaʕid] to express the progressive in NA.

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