Theories of the simple sentence

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Theories of the simple sentence

The analysis of the sentence into immediate constituents. The S in traditional grammar is shown as a lineal model S-P-O-D – the neutral pattern of the declarative S, or as a functional hierarchy. While the 1st model fails to show the generating process of the grammatically correct sentences, the other scheme fails to show the lineal order of speech. The drobecs were to be overcome by th analysis called the model of the immediate constituents, I-see model. The sentence structure is presented as made up by binary I-sees semantically connected on the basis of subordination.

The old lady looked at the stranger closely. Firstly sentence is divided into the largest I-sees: the noun phrase and the verb phrase, which correspond to the subject and the predicate groups of the S. The NP is further divided into the determiner and the rest of the NP. The VP is divided the adverbial and the rest of the VP. The NP is divided into the attribute and the noun. The VP is divided into the verb and objective noun phrase. The later is finally divided into the preposition and the noun. To make the I-see model analysis different graphs are used: the analytical I-see diagram, the I-see derivational tree, the candelabra graph and some others. The drobec of the I-see model is that the re-writing rules become too many if the S is long and structurally complicated. Besides there are examples when the same formal structure corresponds to semantically different sentences: He is eager to please/ He is easy to please. Grammatical meaning is different (Active/ Passive).

The verb centric theory of the S. This theory is based on the investigation of the combinatorial potential of the predicate in the S. It stresses the importance of the predicate (the verb) in the structure of the S. The elementary S is the S with obligatory parts only which in their turn are determined by the verb. Some verbs need objects to build grammatically correct sentences, others - need adverbial modifiers. In this case the object and the adverbial modifier are not only the subject and the predicate are obligatory parts of the S. and the S is elementary.

The paradigmatic study of the simple sentence. Traditional grammar studied the S from the point of view of its syntagmatic structure as it is considered that syntax should concern itself only with lineal connections of words. In fact syntagmatic relations in syntax are as inseparable from a paradigmatic relations as in morphology. The study of paradigmatics of the S was initiated by a transformational grammar. The grammarians set themselves the two procedures of transforming them: a) to determine the kernel of the S; b) the procedures of transforming them into more complicated structures. The nucleus S structurally coincides with elementary S. The two major nucleus sentence types are N+V or N+Adj. The subject in the nucleus S is a noun in the singular, the predicate is in the present tense, indefinite aspect, indicative mood, active voice. Any possible change in the model of the nucleus S produces a transform S. The procedures of transformation are subdivided into: - morphological rearrangement –morphological changes expressing grammatical categories: The boy studies/is studying; - functional expansion – the use of functional word: the boy seems/must study; - substitution – the notional words are replaced by functionals: Give me another book/ one; - elision – elimination of some elements of the S: I’m coming. Coming!; - positional arrangement – changes in the word order (grammatical or stylistical inversion); - intonational arrangement – changes in the intonational pattern. As a rule procedures are not used in isolation but in different combinations with one another and other types.


№7Історія розвитку фоностилістики як фундаментальної галузі фонетики. Головні проблеми фоностилістики. Процедура та методи фоностилістичного аналізу

During the first half of our century lin­guists have shown interest in written form of the language and so the emphasis in language study was laid on analysing written speech. It is only during the last thirty-five years that the situation has changed. It may be said that it was the invention of the tape-recorder and other technical aids that was the real turning point in phonetics and linguistics in general. Linguists got a good opportunity of studying the other form of language realization - spoken speech - the variety which had hitherto been largely or completely ignored. It is not only the absence of mechanical aids which accounts for the lack of linguistic research that has been carried out into this variety of language and the proce­dure difficulty of obtaining reliable data to investigate. There is, how­ever, a further reason. Until quite recently theory and research on lan­guage was based on the assumption that it is only the written form of language realization that can serve a reliable object of investigation, while the spoken form is not worthy of scientific analysis because it produces deviations from the literary norm.

Nobody would want to deny the fact that spoken speech is the primary medium of language expression. So when linguists became in­volved in I investigating language in use they realized that language is not an isolated phenomenon, it is a part of society. In real life people find themselves in various and numerous situations. In these situations language is used appropriately, i.e. people select from their tots! lin­guistic repertoires those elements which match the needs of particular situations.

This fact changed the whole approach to the language. Rather than viewing language as an object with independent existence, a thing to be described for its own sake, it became evident that it must be seen as a tool, a means to an end outside itself. That end is, of course, com­munication and it is only in the context of communicative situation that the essential properties of a linguistic system can be discovered and analysed.

Phonostylistics studies the way of usage of phonetic means in the particular situation. The aim is to analyse all possible kinds of spoken utterances with the main purpose of identifying the phonetic features and classifying them into categories and explaining their functions.

Extralinguistic situation can be defined by three components that is purpose participants, setting. Purposes can be viewed in terms of general activity types and in terms of the activity type p1us specific subject matter. The 2nd component is based on speech as a marker of various characteristics of the individuals and their relationships. These characteristics are divided into 2 gr.: individual marks and social characteristics. The 3d component is defined by the following features: 1) physical orientation of participants (activity they are engaged in) 2) an arrangement along value skills 3) the variations of phonetic means that result in phonostylistic varieties creates a problem of style modifying and style differentiating patterns. They are

1) the purpose, or the aim of the utterance;

2) the speaker's attitude;

3) the form of communication;

4) the degree of formality;

5) the degree of spontaneity



№8 головні галузі фонетики, історія їх розвитку, об’єкт та методи дослідження, сфери практичного застосування.

Phonetics- is concerned with the human noises by which the thought is actualised or given audible shape: the nature of these noises, their combinations, and their functions in relation to the meaning. Phonetics studies the sound system of the language, that is segmental phonemes, word stress, syllabic structure and intonation. phonetics is a basic branch - many would say the most fundamental branch - of linguistics; neither linguistic theory nor linguistic practice can do without phonetics, and no language description is complete without phonetics, the science concerned with I lie spoken medium of language. That is why phonetics claims to be of luual importance with grammar and lexicology.

Phonetics has two main divisions; on the one hand, phonology, the study of thesound patterns of languages, of how a .spoken language functions as a "code", and on the other, the study of substance that carries the code.

There arc three branches of phonetics each corresponding to a different stage in the communication process mentioned above. Each of these branches uses quite special sets of methods.

The branch of phonetics that studies the way in which the air is set in motion, the movements of the speech organs and the coordina­tion of these movements in the production of single sounds and trains of sounds is called articulatory phonetics. Acoustic phonetics _studies the way in which the air vibrates be­tween the speaker's mouth and the listener's ear. Until recently, articulatory phonetics has been the dominating branch, and most descriptive work has been done in articulatory terms. Furthermore, there has ap­peared no need to alter the balance in any substantial way, especially for the purpose of teaching, acoustic phonetics presenting special inter­est for research work and applied linguistics. Nevertheless, in the near­est future it may start to play a constantly growing part in teaching pronunciation. We may hope that the development of computing technique will give rise to all sort of teaching machines.

The branch of phonetics investigating the hearing process is known as auditory phonetics Its interests lie more in the sensation of hearing, which is brain activity, than in the physiological working of the ear or the nervous activity between the ear and the brain. The means by which we discriminate sounds - quality, sensations of pitch, loudness, length, are relevant here. This branch of phonetics is of great interest to anyone who teaches or studies pronunciation.

It is interesting now to consider the methods applied in investigat­ing the sound matter of the language.

From the beginning of phonetics the phonetician has relied mainly on what he could feel of his own speech and on what he could hear both of his own and the informant's speech. By training and practice he gains a high degree of conscious control over the muscular func­tioning of his vocal apparatus, and by experience he may acquire con­siderable skill in associating the qualities of the heard sound with the nature of the articulations producing it. These skills are obligatory for phoneticians and make phonetics an art rather than a science, an art which must be specially learned.

Instrumental methods deriving from physiology and physics were introduced into phonetics in the second half of the last century in or­der to supplement and indeed to rectify the impressions deriving from the human senses, especially the auditory impressions, since these are affected by the limitations of the perceptual mechanism, and in general are rather subjective.

The use of instruments is valuable in ascertaining the nature of the
limitations and characteristics of the human sensory apparatus by pro­
viding finer and more detailed analysis against which sensory analysis
can be assessed. In a general way, the introduction of machines for
measurements and for instrumental analysis into phonetics has resulted
in their Use for detailed study of many of the phenomena which are
present in the sound wave or in the articulatory process at any given
moment, and in the changes of these phenomena from moment to
moment. This is strictly an instrumental method of study. This type of
investigation together with sensory analysis is widely used in experimental phonetics

Acoustic phonetics comes close to studying physics and the tools used in this field enable the investigator to measure and analyse the movement of the air in the terms of acoustics. This generally means introducing a microphone into the speech chain, converting the air movement into corresponding electrical activity and analysing the result in terms of frequency of vibration and amplitude of vibration in rela­tion to time. The use of such technical devices as spectrograph, intono-graph and other sound analysing and sound synthesing machines is generally combined with the method of direct observation.

The methods applied in auditory phonetics are those of experimen­tal psychology.

As was stated above, phoneticians cannot act only as describers and classifiers of the material form of phonetic units. They are also inter­ested in the way in which sound phenomena function in a particular language, how they are utilized in that language and what part they play in manifesting the meaningful distinctions of the language. The branch of phonetics that studies the linguistic function of consonant and vowel sounds, syllabic structure, word accent and prosodic features, such as pitch, stress and tempo is called phonology.

In linguistics, function is usually understood to mean discriminatory function, that is, the role of the various elements of the language in the distinguishing of one sequence of sounds, such as a word or a sequence of words, from another of different meaning. Though we consider the discriminatory function to be the main linguistic function of any phonetic unit we cannot ignore the other function of phonetic units, that is, their role in the formation of syllables, words, phrases and even texts. This functional or social aspect of phonetic phenomena first introduced"in the works by LA. Baudouin-de-Courtenay. Later on N.S. Trubetskoy declared phonology to be a linguistic science limiting articulatory and acoustic phonetics to anatomy, physiology and H nasties only. This conception is shared by many foreign linguists who Investigate the material form and the function of oral speech unitsicparately. National linguists proceed from the truly materialistic view that language being the man's medium of thought can exist only in the material form of speech sounds. That is why they consider phonology a branch of phonetics that investigates its most important social aspect.

In our technological age phonetics has become important in a num­ber of technological fields connected with communication. On the re­search side much present-day work in phonetics entails the use of ap­paratus, and is concerned with the basic characteristics of human speech. Much basic research is to be done with the phonetician work­ing alongside the psychologist on auditory perception as such and on the perception of speech in particular. The phonetician is further needed to work in conjunction with the „ mathematician and the com­munications engineer in devising and perfecting machines that will un­derstand, that is respond to human speech, for the simpler program­ming of computers, machines that will produce with a high degree of intelligibility recognizable human speech synthetically, machines that will reliably distinguish and identify individual speakers, machines for re­producing human speech in audible or visible forms. For instance, in the experimental stage are devices for "reading" the printed page, that is for converting the printed symbols or letters into synthetic speech. A little further away as yet, but apparently well within the bounds of possibility is the automatic or phonetic typewriter, which will convert speech directly into printed words on paper. Because of the obvious practical importance of advances in these fields it is certain that further collaboration will develop between phonetics and sound engineering, to the mutual benefit of each.

For those who work in .speech therapy, which handles pathological conditions of speech, phonetics forms an essential part of the profes­sional training syllabus. Phonetics also enters into the training of teach­ers of the deaf and dumb people and can be of relevance to a number of medical and dental problems.

An understanding of phonetics has proved extremely useful in such varied spheres as the following: investigations in the historical aspects of languages, and in the field of dialectology; designing or improving systems of writing or spelling (orthographies for unwritten languages, shorthand, spelling reform), in questions involving the spelling or pro­nunciation of personal or place names or of words borrowed from other languages.


№9 Соціальна та навчальна цінність фонетики. Проблема «норми мови», якої повинні навчати в школі.

A study of phonetics has, we believe, educational value for almost everyone, realizing the importance of language in human communica­tion. It is fair to mention here that though language is the most im­portant method we have of communicating, it is manifestly not the only method. We can communicate by gestures, facial expressions, or touch, for instance, and these are not language. The study of the com­plex of various communication techniques is definitely relevant to teaching a foreign language. Through study of the nature of language, especially of spoken language, valuable insights are gained into human psychology and into the functioning of man in society. That is why we dare say that phonetics has considerable social value.

The present volume attempts to survey the system of phonetic phe­nomena of English giving priority to those which present special inter­est to teaching activity. To start with it is necessary to realize what kind of English is used in the process of teaching. We all agree that we are to teach the "norm" of English, as a whole, and the "norm" of English pronunciation in particular. There is no much agreement, however, as far as the term "norm" is concerned. This term is interpreted in different ways. Some scholars, for instance, associate "norm" with the so-called "neutral" style. According to this conception stylisti­cally marked parameters do not belong to the norm. More suitable, however, seems to be the conception put forward by Y. Screbnev who looks upon the “norm” as complex ot all functional styles. We have given priority to the second point of view as it is clearly not possible to look upon the pronunciation norm as something ideal which does not, in fact, exist in objective speech. We look upon the norm as a complex unity of phonetic styles realized in the process of commu­nication in accordance with varying extralinguistic and social factors.

In the following chapter we are going to dwell on the problems concerned with stylistic variation of oral speech including the analysis of the conditions under which the utterance is produced, the relation­ship between the utterance and the extralinguistic and social situation, etc.


10. Phonetic functional styles. These styles are related to social setting or circumstances in which language is used. It is universally acknowledged that a person speaks differently on different occasions, e.g. chatting with intimate friends or talking to official persons, when delivering a lecture, s[peaking over the radio or giving a dictation exercise. The choice of a speech style is situatiunally determined. The problem of speech typology and phonetic differences conditioned by such extra-linguistic factors as age, sex, personality traits, status, occupation, purpose, social identity (or “class dialect”) and the emotional state of the speaker. Extra-linguistic factors are those features of utterance, which seem to have little potential for entering into systemic relationships, which have a relatively isolated function and cannot be easily integrated with other aspects of language structure. A sub-set of situational factors forms the so-called extra-linguistic context that is everything non-linguistic, which exists at the time of using the linguistic features.

Thus, knowing the style of the speech, a person is sure to use definite markers of this style, e.g. pausation, intonation, rhythm. Besides, knowing the style, a person is aware of the message of the utterance or text and knows how to present it to the listeners correctly in order to achieve the definite aim of communication.


11.Phoneme is the smallest contrastive meaningful unit of a sound system of a language. Main trends in phoneme theory:

1) the mentalistic or psychological view regards the phoneme as an ideal “mental image’ or a target at which the speaker aims. He deviates from this ideal sound partly because an identical repetition of a sound is next to impossible and of the influence exerted by neighbouring sounds. According to this conception allophones of the phoneme are varying materializations of it. Founders: Baudauin de Courtenay, Sapir, Sommerfelt;

2) the functional view regards the phoneme as the minimal sound unit by which meanings may be differentiated without much regard to actually pronounced speech sounds. Meaning differentiation is taken to be a defining characteristic of phonemes. The functional approach extracts non-distinctive features from the phonemes thus divorcing the phoneme from actually pronounced speech sounds. The functional view of the phoneme gave rise to a branch of linguistics called “phonology”, which is concerned with relationships between contrasting sounds in a language. Founders: Trubetskoy, Bloomfield, Jakobson;

3) the abstract view of the phoneme regards phonemes as essentially independent of the acoustic and physiological properties associated with them, that is of speech sounds. Founders: Uidall, Togby, Hjelmslev.

All these views regard the phoneme as an abstract conception existing in the mind but not in reality that is in human speech.

The aim of the phonological analysis is the identification of the phonemes and finding out the patterns of relationship into which they fall as the sound system of that language.

For an unknown language the procedure of identifying the phonemes of a language as the smallest language units has several stages:

1) to determine the minimum recurrent segments and to record them graphically by means of allophonic transcription;

2) the arranging of sounds into functionally similar groups. There are two most widely used methods of finding it out: the distributional and the semantic methods. The distributional method is mainly used by phoneticians of structuralist persuasions, they consider it possible to group all the sounds pronounced by native speakers into phonemes according to two laws of phonemic and allophonic distribution. They are:

1. Allophones of different phonemes occur in the same phonetic context.

2. Allophones of the same phoneme never occur in the same phonetic context.

The semantic method is based on a phonemic rule that phonemes can distinguish words and morphemes when opposed to one another; it also attaches great significance to meaning. First we do communication test and find out minimal pairs.


12. Historically the territory of the UK is divided into 4 parts: England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Island. The mountains cover the graeter part of northern, western and middle Great btitain. They can be divided into following regions:

1) the Highlands of Scotland (the north-western Highlands and the Grampians)

2) the Southern Uplands and the Pennines;

3) the Cumbrians.

As a group the people are usually referred to as the British. Only people who come from England can be called English. People from Wales – Welsh, Scotland – Scots (the Scottish), Ireland – Irish. English is the official language of the UK. British English Pronunciation Standards and Accents comprise English English, Welsh English, Scottish English and Northern Ireland English. Welsh English is very similar to southern English, although the influence of Welsh has played a great role in its formation.

The national symbols of Scotland: unicorn (freedom, innocence), bagpipe (mourning for freedom), thistle, tartan; of Wales: daffodil, leek; of Northern Ireland: the shamrock, harp; of England: a red rose, a bulldog, wearing a Union Jack waistcoat, John Bull, an old-fashioned, fat country gentleman.

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