Linguistics course Assignment attached to keep chart formatting.

1) Indicate the syntactic category to which each of the following sets of examples belong. You may consider appropriate categories to include the word, phrase, clause, and sentence levels.

CategoryExample
nounlove, life, book
a, an, these, that
to, from, for, by
wrote, bought, threw
big, lively, green
wanted to go to town, refused his offer, ran out the clock
very, fast, tomorrow
He loves football   Jane needs a cup of coffee
to the bank, under the table, with a friend
a good book, the last Mohican, the final frontier

2) For the purpose of this exercise, evaluate grammaticality on the basis of syntactic structures. If you believe a sentence is ungrammatical, specify the basis for that analysis. If you believe there is an error in the sentence, even if you assess the sentence as ‘grammatical,’ note the type of error.

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GrammaticalitySentence
One may argue ‘ungrammatical,’ on the basis that “ain’t” is not standard dialect. However, if syntactic structure is the unit of evaluation, it could be argued that this is ‘grammatical,’ because it clearly adheres to the syntactic rules and word usage of dialects of English.He ain’t got no money.
The cat is ate the fish.
The fish goes up in the water.
There was no fish in the bol.
When the cat is gone the fish also was gone!
The cat is catching a fish and eating to the fish.

2.5) For each element highlighted in red, indicate whether it is an argument or adjunct.

The cat is ate the fish.
There was no fish in the bol.
When the cat is gone the fish also was gone!
The cat is catching a fish and eating to the fish.

3) Evaluate the following and indicate two possible interpretations for each. Also, identify the source of the ambiguity (e.g. lexical, phrasal, clausal, etc.) and briefly explain.

  • I said I would see you on Tuesday.
  • Students hate annoying professors.
  • The French professor is the students’ favorite.

4) Indicate whether the following reflect lexical or compositional semantics.

CategoryExample
Compositional: fairy dust is a phrase that depends on the combination of the two words to yield reference to a specific entityTinkerbell sprinkled fairy dust, which is a specific type of dust that only fairies can create.
If John likes soccer and football, then John must like soccer, and John must like football.
Tall and short are gradable antonyms.
The expression strike while the iron is hot seems a bit barbaric in modern times.

5) Answer the following questions regarding various semantic relationships.

  • Why is ‘mouse’ polysemous? What are two meanings for the word, and how are they related?
  • Why does the following series represent hypernym/hyponym relationships: clothing > shirt > t-shirt > graphic T?
  •  Identify each of the following as gradable or relational.
gradablegood – bad
happy – sad
dead – alive
parent – child
dark – light

6) Denotation, Connotation, Reference

  • Two media sources describe the same event. In one, a group is labeled “freedom fighters.” In the other, the same group is referred to as “terrorists.” Explain the variability in the terminology using concepts such as denotation, connotation, and reference.
  • A colleague, who happens to be a nonnative speaker of English, refers to a common acquaintance as ‘childish,’ and intends the comment as a compliment regarding the person’s curiosity and open nature. What would be a more accurate term to describe the acquaintance – and how could you help your colleague see the need to use that term instead?

7) Gricean maxims (quantity, quality, manner, relevance)

  • In the following exchanges, identify which maxim is flouted and what is communicated as a result.
 Is Jack dating someone new? Well, he’s been going to Atlanta every weekend for the past two months.
How did she do on her paper? The formatting was pretty solid.
Have you finished all of your homework?I’ve finished biology and math.
Do you like her new haircut?I think it’s interesting.

8) Bold the words that are deictic referents (if any) in each sentence below.

  1. He refused to listen to her explanation of what happened.
  1. It is going to be really cold today, so be sure to wear a heavy coat.
  1. Unfortunately, there is very little chance that his application will be accepted.
  1. Jack wanted to go to the movie, but Josie convinced him to stay home and watch the game.
  1. A tiger can be a scary animal to encounter in a jungle!

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