Die ideofoon in Tswana / Willem Abraham Prinsloo Ras
Ras, Willem Abraham Prinsloo
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The aim of this study was firstly to summarise what research has already been done on the ideophone in literature, especially in Tswana literature. Secondly, an important aim was to establish what the morphological. syntactic, semantic and phonological properties are of the ideophone in Tswana. Divergent viewpoints have been expressed with regard to the nature of the ideophone in literature, because the phenomenon has been considered on the grounds of various linguistic approaches. In order to highlight this. one chapter has been devoted to this diversity of approach and point of view. and a suitable model. namely that of a structural linguistic study. was decided on. The qualities of the ideophone in Tswana were scrutinized within the framework of this model. Certain morphological properties were deduced on the basis of the paradigmatic and syntagmatic analyses. Ideophones reveal a number of morphemes which occur in a suffixed position. namely the ideophonicating, reduplicating and intensifying morphemes. The majority of ideophones seem to be formed from their related verb stems. Non-derivative ideophones show that they have not been derived from any related word form. Most derived ideophones. viz. deverbative ideophones. can be traced back to their verb stems, while a smaller number of de-adjective ideophones. are also formed from related ideophones. Morphologically, it has been established that the ideophone functions as an ideophonically descriptive term in the verb group containing re as the verb. Syntactically. ideophones have a dual word class status as a result of their valent qualities. Therefore. they may have a predicative or descriptive nature. Because of this duality. they may exhibit descriptive (adverbial) qualities in the context of verb and auxiliary verb groups, as well as predicative properties if they are used by themselves as a complete sentence or without the suggested verb s. Predicative ideophones may be transitive or intransitive, and can incorporate both a subject and an object morpheme. Semantically. ideophones have an explicating and an intensifying function. Synonyms. antonyms. homonyms. identical pairs of ideophones. metaphors, polysemy and figurative language were frequently found in the corpus of ideophones. Paradigmatically, the ideophonic morpheme imparts a semantic value of intensity to ideophones. while a doubling morpheme creates the semantic aspect of motion. intensity and suddenness. Syntagmatically it was determined that if the verb does not appear in a sentence. the ideophone acquires a greater semantic prominence. Ideophones are characterized phonologically by the doubling of both consonants and vowels. Phonologically. too, ideophones have an exaggerated variation of tone, i.e. both an abnormally high or low tone, with a falling and rising intonation. The tone of the ideophone is not affected by its position in the sentence. but does differ from one speaker to the next. The general conclusion drawn from this study is that the ideophone in Tswana has a dual word class status. because it displays both adverbial and verbal qualities.
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