Applicative Constructions in Setswana in LMT Theory

  • S Morapedi


Previous studies carried out on Setswana verbal affixes have confined their investigations to these morphemes as elements of morphology but have failed to observe that these affixes overlap into syntax. Yet current debates on the treatment of such Bantu languages
morphemes are focused on the nature of the relation between syntax and morphology. (Sesotho: Machobane 1989); Chichewa: (Baker 1988), Alsina and Mchombo (1993); Chishona: Harford (1993); Kinyarwanda: Kimenyi (1990); Kiswahili: (Bresnan and Moshi
1993:47). Further, the studies do not give any theoretical insight in the analysis of the verbal extension in relation to argument structure Setswana. Therefore, certain features that Setswana shares with other Bantu language are prejudiced. This paper approaches the
analysis of applicative verbal extension –el from a morpho-syntactic view point and shows that the applicative verbal extension -el is capable of bringing into effect morphological and syntactic marking to the sentence. In particular, this paper examines the applicative
constructions and argues that the suffixation of the verbal suffix –el suggests an entity carrying out the action and somebody benefiting. This information is encoded in the constituent structure. The analyses of data in this paper will be based on Lexical Mapping theory (Bresnan and Kanerva (1989).

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eISSN: 1813-2227