语言学练习(1-5)

Supplementary exercises

Chapter 1 Introduction

Ⅰ. Decide whether each of the following statements is True or False:

1. Linguistics is generally defined as the scientific study of language.

2. Linguistics studies particular language, not languages in general.

3. A scientific study of language is based on what the linguist thinks.

4. In the study of linguistics, hypotheses formed should be based on language facts and checked against the observed facts.

5. General linguistics is generally the study of language as a whole.

6. General linguistics, which relates itself to the research of other areas, studies the basic concepts, theories, descriptions, models and methods applicable in any linguistic study.

7. Phonetics is different from phonology in that the latter studies the combinations of the sounds to convey meaning in communication.

8. Morphology studies how words can be formed to produce meaningful sentences.

9. The study of the ways in which morphemes can be combined to form words is called morphology.

10. Syntax is different from morphology in that the former not only studies the morphemes, but also the combination of morphemes into words and words into sentences.

11. The study of meaning in language is known as semantics.

12. Both semantics and pragmatics study meanings.

13. Pragmatics is different from semantics in that pragmatics studies meaning not in isolation, but in context.

14. Social changes can often bring about language changes.

15. Sociolinguistics is the study of language in relation to society.

16. Modern linguistics is mostly prescriptive, but sometimes descriptive.

17. Modern linguistics is different from traditional grammar.

18. A diachronic study of language is the description of language at some point in time.

19. Modern linguistics regards the written language as primary, not the written language.

20. The distinction between competence and performance was proposed by F. de Saussure.

Ⅱ. Fill in each of the following blanks with one word which begins with the letter given:

21. Chomsky defines “competence” as the ideal user’s k__________ of the rules of his language.

22. Langue refers to the a__________ linguistic system shared by all the members of a speech community while the parole is the concrete use of the conventions and application of the rules.

23. D_________ is one of the design features of human language which refers to the phenomenon that language consists of two levels: a lower level of meaningless individual sounds and a higher level of meaningful units.

24. Language is a system of a_________ vocal symbols used for human communication.

25. The discipline that studies the rules governing the formation of words into permissible sentences in languages is called s________.

26. Human capacity for language has a g_______ basis, but the details of language have to be taught and learned.

27. P _______ refers to the realization of langue in actual use.

28. Findings in linguistic studies can often be applied to the settlement of some practical problems. The study of such applications is generally known as a________ linguistics.

29. Language is p___________ in that it makes possible the construction and interpretation of new signals by its users. In other words, they can produce and understand an infinitely large number of sentences which they have never heard before.

30. Linguistics is generally defined as the s _______ study of language.

Ⅲ. There are four choices following each statement. Mark the choice that can best complete the statement:

31. If a linguistic study describes and analyzes the language people actually use, it is said to be _______.

A. prescriptive

B. analytic

C. descriptive

D. linguistic

32. Which of the following is not a design feature of human language?

A. Arbitrariness

B. Displacement

C. Duality

D. Meaningfulness

33. Modern linguistics regards the written language as _______.

A. primary

B. correct

C. secondary

D. stable

34. In modern linguistics, speech is regarded as more basic than writing, because _______.

A. in linguistic evolution, speech is prior to writing

B. speech plays a greater role than writing in terms of the amount of information conveyed

C. speech is always the way in which every native speaker acquires his mother tongue

D. All of the above

35. A historical study of language is a _______ study of language.

A. synchronic

B. diachronic

C. prescriptive

D. comparative

36. Saussure took a(n) _______ view of language, while Chomsky looks at language from a ________ point of view.

A. sociological…psychological

B. psychological…sociological

C. applied…pragmatic

D. semantic…linguistic

37. According to F. de Saussure, _______ refers to the abstract linguistic system shared by all the members of a speech community.

A. parole

B. performance

C. langue

D. Language

38. Language is said to be arbitrary because there is no logical connection between _______ and meanings.

A. sense

B. sounds

C. objects

D. ideas

39. Language can be used to refer to contexts removed from the immediate situations of the speaker. This feature is called _______,

A. displacement

B. duality

C. flexibility

D. cultural transmission

40. The details of any language system is passed on from one generation to the next through _______, rather than by instinct.

A. learning

B. teaching

C. books

D. both A and B

Ⅳ. Define the following terms:

41. Linguistics

42. Phonology

43. Syntax

44. Pragmatics

45. Psycholinguistics

46. Language

47. Phonetics

48. Morphology

49. Semantics

50. Sociolinguistics

51. Applied Linguistics

52. Arbitrariness

53. Productivity

54. Displacement

55. Duality

56. Design Features

57. Competence

58. Performance

59. Langue

60. Parole

Ⅴ. Answer the following questions as comprehensively as possible. Give examples for illustration if necessary:

61. Language is generally defined as a system of arbitrary vocal symbols used for human communication. Explain it in detail.

62. What are the design features of human language? Illustrate them with examples.

63. How is modern linguistics different from traditional grammar?

64. How do you understand the distinction between a synchronic study and a diachronic study?

65. Why does modern linguistics regard the spoken form of language as primary, not the written?

66. What are the major distinctions between langue and parole?

67. How do you understand competence and performance?

68. Saussure’s distinction between langue and parole seems similar to Chomsky’s distinction between competence and performance. What do you think are their major differences?

69. Do you think human language is entirely arbitrary? Why?

Chapter 2 Phonology

Ⅰ. Decide whether each of the following statements is True or False:

1. V oicing is a phonological feature that distinguishes meaning in both Chinese and English.

2. If two phonetically similar sounds occur in the same environments and they distinguish meaning, they are said to be in complementary distribution.

3. A phone is a phonetic unit that distinguishes meaning.

4. English is a tone language while Chinese is not.

5. In linguistic evolution, speech is prior to writing.

6. In everyday communication, speech plays a greater role than writing in terms of the amount of information conveyed.

7. Articulatory phonetics tries to describe the physical properties of the stream of sounds which a speaker issues with the help of a machine called spectrograph.

8. The articulatory apparatus of a human being are contained in three important areas: the throat, the mouth and the chest.

9. Vibration of the vocal cords results in a quality of speech sounds called voicing.

10. English consonants can be classified in terms of place of articulation and the part of the tongue that is raised the highest.

11. According to the manner of articulation, some of the types into which the consonants can be classified are stops, fricatives, bilabial and alveolar.

12. V owel sounds can be differentiated by a number of factors: the position of tongue in the mouth, the openness of the mouth, the shape of the lips, and the length of the vowels.

13. According to the shape of the lips, vowels can be classified into close vowels, semi-close vowels, semi-open vowels and open vowels.

14. Any sound produced by a human being is a phoneme.

15. Phones are the sounds that can distinguish meaning.

16. Phonology is concerned with how the sounds can be classified into different categories.

17. A basic way to determine the phonemes of a language is to see if substituting one sound for another results in a change of meaning.

18. When two different forms are identical in every way except for one sound segment which occurs in the same place in the strings, the two words are said to form a phonemic contrast.

19. The rules governing the phonological patterning are language specific.

20. Distinctive features of sound segments can be found running over a sequence of two or more phonemic segments.

Ⅱ. Fill in each of the following blanks with one word which begins with the letter given:

21. A_______ refers to a strong puff of air stream in the production of speech sounds.

22. A_______ phonetics describes the way our speech organs work to produce the speech sounds and how they differ.

23. The four sounds /p/, /b/, /m/ and /w/ have one feature in common, i.e., they are all b_______ sounds.

24. Of all the speech organs, the t_______ is the most flexible, and is responsible for varieties of articulation than any other.

25. English consonants can be classified in terms of manner of articulation or in terms of p_______ of articulation.

26. When the obstruction created by the speech organs is total or complete, the speech sound produced with the obstruction audibly released and the air passing out again is called a s________.

27. S_________ features are the phonemic features that occur above the level of the segments. They include stress, tone, intonation, etc.

28. The rules that govern the combination of sounds in a particular language are called s_______ rules.

29. The transcription of speech sounds with letter-symbols only is called broad transcription while the transcription with letter-symbols together with the diacritics is called n_________ transcription.

30. When pitch, stress and sound length are tied to the sentence rather than the word in isolation, they are

collectively known as i_________.

31. P___________ is a discipline which studies the system of sounds of a particular language and how sounds are combined into meaningful units to effect linguistic communication.

32. The articulatory apparatus of a human being are contained in three important cavities: the pharyngeal cavity, the o_______ cavity and the nasal cavity.

33. T_______ are pitch variations, which are caused by the differing rates of vibration of the vocal cords and which can distinguish meaning just like phonemes.

34. Depending on the context in which stress is considered, there are two kinds of stress: word stress and s_________ stress.

Ⅲ. There are four choices following each statement. Mark the choice that can best complete the statement:

35. Of all the speech organs, the _______ is/are the most flexible.

A. mouth

B. lips

C. tongue

D. vocal cords

36. The sounds produced without the vocal cords vibrating are ____ sounds.

A. voiceless

B. voiced

C. vowel

D. consonantal

37. __________ is a voiced alveolar stop.

A. /z/

B. /d/

C. /k/

D. /b/

38. The assimilation rule assimilates one sound to another by “copying” a feature of a sequ ential phoneme, thus making the two phones ____________.

A. identical

B. same

C. exactly alike

D. similar

39. Since /p/ and /b/ are phonetically similar, occur in the same environments and they can distinguish meaning, they are said to be ___________.

A. in phonemic contrast

B. in complementary distribution

C. the allophones

D. minimal pair

40. The sound /f/ is _________________.

A. voiced palatal affricate

B. voiced alveolar stop

C. voiceless velar fricative

D. voiceless labiodental fricative

41. A ____ vowel is one that is produced with the front part of the tongue maintaining the highest position.

A. back

B. central

C. front

D. middle

42. Distinctive features can be found running over a sequence of two or more phonemic segments. The phonemic features that occur above the level of the segments are called _______.

A. phonetic components

B. immediate constituents

C. suprasegmental features

D. semantic features

43. A(n) ___________ is a unit that is of distinctive value. It is an abstract unit, a collection of distinctive phonetic features.

A. phone

B. sound

C. allophone

D. phoneme

44. The different phones which can represent a phoneme in different phonetic environments are called the ____ of that phoneme.

A. phones

B. sounds

C. phonemes

D. allophones

Ⅳ. Define the terms below:

45. phonology

46. phoneme

47. allophone

48. international phonetic alphabet 49. intonation 50. phonetics

51. auditory phonetics

52. acoustic phonetics

53. phone

54. phonemic contrast

55. tone

56. minimal pair

Ⅴ. Answer the following questions as comprehensively as possible. Give examples for illustration if necessary:

57. Of the two media of language, why do you think speech is more basic than writing?

58. What are the criteria that a linguist uses in classifying vowels?

59. What are the major differences between phonology and phonetics?

60. Illustrate with examples how suprasegmental features can affect meaning.

61. In what way can we determine whether a phone is a phoneme or not?

Chapter 3 Morphology

Ⅰ. Decide whether each of the following statements is True or False:

1. Morphology studies the internal structure of words and the rules by which words are formed.

2. Words are the smallest meaningful units of language.

3. Just as a phoneme is the basic unit in the study of phonology, so is a morpheme the basic unit in the study of morphology.

4. The smallest meaningful units that can be used freely all by themselves are free morphemes.

5. Bound morphemes include two types: roots and affixes.

6. Inflectional morphemes manifest various grammatical relations or grammatical categories such as number, tense, degree, and case.

7. The existing form to which a derivational affix can be added is called a stem, which can be a bound root, a free morpheme, or a derived form itself.

8. Prefixes usually modify the part of speech of the original word, not the meaning of it.

9. There are rules that govern which affix can be added to what type of stem to form a new word. Therefore, words formed according to the morphological rules are acceptable words.

10. Phonetically, the stress of a compound always falls on the first element, while the second e lement receives secondary stress.

Ⅱ. Fill in each blank below with one word which begins with the letter given:

11. M _______ is the smallest meaningful unit of language.

12. The affix “-ish” in the word boyish conveys a g_______ meaning.

13. B___________ morphemes are those that cannot be used independently but have to be combined with other morphemes, either free or bound, to form a word.

14. Affixes are of two types: inflectional affixes and d__________ affixes.

15. D________ affixes are added to an existing form to create words.

16. A s______ is added to the end of stems to modify the meaning of the original word and it may case change its part of speech.

17. C__________ is the combination of two or sometimes more than two words to create new words.

18. The rules that govern which affix can be added to what type of stem to form a new word are called m___________ rules.

19. In terms of morphemic analysis, d_____________ can be viewed as the addition of affixes to stems to form new words.

20. A s________ can be a bound root, a free morpheme, or a derived form itself to which a derivational affix can be added.

Ⅲ. There are four choices following each statement. Mark the choice that can best complete the statement:

21. The morpheme “vision” in the common word “television” is a(n) ______.

A. bound morpheme

B. bound form

C. inflectional morpheme

D. free morpheme

22. The compound word “bookstore” is the place where books are sold. This indicates that the meaning of

a compound __________.

A. is the sum total of the meaning of its components

B. can always be worked out by looking at the meanings of morphemes

C. is the same as the meaning of a free phrase.

D. None of the above.

23. The part of speech of the compounds is generally determined by the part of speech of __________.

A. the first element

B. the second element

C. either the first or the second element

D. both the first and the second elements

24. _______ are those that cannot be used independently but have to be combined with other morphemes, either free or bound, to form a word.

A. Free morphemes

B. Bound morphemes

C. Bound words

D. Words

25. _________ is a branch of grammar which studies the internal structure of words and the rules by which words are formed.

A. Syntax

B. Grammar

C. Morphology

D. Morpheme

26. The meaning carried by the inflectional morpheme is _______.

A. lexical

B. morphemic

C. grammatical

D. semantic

27. Bound morphemes are those that ___________.

A. have to be used independently

B. can not be combined with other morphemes

C. can either be free or bound

D. have to be combined with other morphemes

28. _______ modify the meaning of the stem, but usually do not change the part of speech of the original word.

A. Prefixes

B. Suffixes

C. Roots

D. Affixes

29. _________ are often thought to be the smallest meaningful units of language by the linguists.

A. Words

B. Morphemes

C. Phonemes

D. Sentences

30. “-s” in the word “books” is _______.

A. a derivative affix

B. a stem

C. an inflectional affix

D. a root

Ⅳ. Define the following terms:

31. morphology

32. inflectional morphology

33. derivational morphology

34. morpheme

35. free morpheme

36. bound morpheme

37. root

38. affix

39. prefix

40. suffix

41. derivation

42. Compounding

Ⅴ. Answer the following questions:

43. What are the main features of the English compounds?

44. Discuss the types of morphemes with examples.

Chapter 4 Syntax

Ⅰ. Decide whether each of the following statements is True or False:

1. Syntax is a subfied of linguistics that studies the sentence structure of language, including the combination of morphemes into words.

2. Grammatical sentences are formed following a set of syntactic rules.

3. Sentences are composed of sequence of words arranged in a simple linear order, with one adding onto another following a simple arithmetic logic.

4. Universally found in the grammars of all human languages, syntactic rules that comprise the system of internalized linguistic knowledge of a language speaker are known as linguistic competence.

5. The syntactic rules of any language are finite in number, but there is no limit to the number of sentences native speakers of that language are able to produce and comprehend.

6. In a complex sentence, the two clauses hold unequal status, one subordinating the other.

7. Constituents that can be substituted for one another without loss of grammaticality belong to the same syntactic category.

8. Minor lexical categories are open because these categories are not fixed and new members are allowed for.

9. In English syntactic analysis, four phrasal categories are commonly recognized and discussed, namely, noun phrase, verb phrase, infinitive phrase, and auxiliary phrase.

10. In English the subject usually precedes the verb and the direct object usually follows the verb.

11. What is actually internalized in the mind of a native speaker is a complete list of words and phrases rather than grammatical knowledge.

12. A noun phrase must contain a noun, but other elements are optional.

13. It is believed that phrase structure rules, with the insertion of the lexicon, generate sentences at the level of D-structure.

14. WH-movement is obligatory in English which changes a sentence from affirmative to interrogative. Ⅱ. Fill in each of the following blanks with one word which begins with the letter given:

15. A s________ sentence consists of a single clause which contains a subject and a predicate and stands alone as its own sentence.

16. A s______ is a structurally independent unit that usually comprises a number of words to form a complete statement, question or command.

17. A s______ may be a noun or a noun phrase in a sentence that usually precedes the predicate.

18. The part of a sentence which comprises a finite verb or a verb phrase and which says something about the subject is grammatically called p_________.

19. A c_________ sentence contains two, or more, clauses, one of which is incorporated into the other.

20. In the complex sentence, the incorporated or subordinate clause is normally called an e_______ clause.

21. Major lexical categories are o_______ categories in the sense that new words are constantly added.

22. A _____ Condition on case assignment states that a case assignor and a case recipient should stay adjacent to each other.

23. P_______ are syntactic options of UG that allow general principles to operate in one way or another and contribute to significant linguistic variations between and among natural languages.

24. The theory of C_______ condition explains the fact that noun phrases appear only in subject and object positions.

Ⅲ. There are four choices following each statement. Mark the choice that can best complete the statement:

25. A sentence is considered ____ when it does not conform to the grammatical knowledge in the mind of native speakers.

A. right

B. wrong

C. grammatical

D. ungrammatical

26. A __________ in the embedded clause refers to the introductory word that introduces the embedded clause.

A. coordinator

B. particle

C. preposition

D. subordinator

27. Phrase structure rules have ____ properties.

A. recursive

B. grammatical

C. social

D. functional

28. Phrase structure rules allow us to better understand _____________.

A. how words and phrases form sentences.

B. what constitutes the grammaticality of strings of words

C. how people produce and recognize possible sentences

D. All of the above.

29. Syntactic movement is dictated by rules traditionally called ________.

A. transformational rules

B. generative rules

C. phrase structure rules

D. x-bar theory

30. The theory of case condition accounts for the fact that __________.

A. noun phrases appear only in subject and object positions.

B. noun phrases can be used to modify another noun phrase

C. noun phrase can be used in adverbial positions

D. noun phrase can be moved to any place if necessary.

31. The sentence structure is ________.

A. only linear

B. Only hierarchical

C. complex

D. both linear and hierarchical

32. The syntactic rules of any language are ____ in number.

A. large

B. small

C. finite

D. infinite

33. The ________ rules are the rules that group words and phrases to form grammatical sentences.

A. lexical

B. morphological

C. linguistic

D. combinational

34._______ rules may change the syntactic representation of a sentence.

A. Generative

B. Transformational

C. X-bar

D. Phrase structure

Ⅳ. Define the following terms:

35. syntax

36. Sentence

37. coordinate sentence

38. syntactic categories

39. grammatical relations

40. linguistic competence

41. transformational rules

42. D-structure

Ⅴ. Answer the following questions:

43. What are the basic components of a sentence?

44. What are the major types of sentences? Illustrate them with examples.

45. Are the elements in a sentence linearly structured? Why?

46. What are the advantages of using tree diagrams in the analysis of sentence structures?

47. What is NP movement. Illustrate it with examples.

Suggested answers to supplementary exercises:

Chapter 1 Introduction

Ⅰ. Decide whether each of the following statements is True or False:

1. T

2. F

3. F

4. T

5. T

6. F

7. T

8. F

9. T 10. F

11. T 12. T 13. T 14. T 15. T 16. F 17. T 18. F 19. F 20. F

Ⅱ. Fill in each of the following blanks with one word which begins with the letter given:

21. knowledge 22. abstract 23. Duality 24. arbitrary 25. syntax

26. genetic 27. Parole 28. applied 29. productive 30. scientific (or systematic)

Ⅲ. There are four choices following each statement. Mark the choice that can best complete the statement.

31. C 32. D 33. C 34. D 35. B 36. A 37. C 38. B 39. A 40. D

Ⅳ. Define the following terms:

41. Linguistics: Linguistics is generally defined as the scientific study of language.

42. Phonology: The study of how sounds are put together and used in communication is called phonology.

43. Syntax: The study of how morphemes and words are combined to form sentences is called syntax.

44. Pragmatics: The study of meaning in context of use is called pragmatics.

45. Psycholinguistics: The study of language with reference to the workings of mind is called psycholinguistics.

46. Language: Language is a system of arbitrary vocal symbols used for human communication.

47. Phonetics: The study of sounds which are used in linguistic communication is called phonetics.

48. Morphology: The study of the way in which morphemes are arranged to form words is called morphology.

49. Semantics: The study of meaning in language is called semantics.

50. Sociolinguistics: The study of language with reference to society is called sociolinguistics.

51. Applied linguistics: In a narrow sense, applied linguistics refers to the application of linguistic principles and theories to language teaching and learning, especially the teaching of foreign and second languages. In a broad sense, it refers to the application of linguistic findings to the solution of practical problems such as the recovery of speech ability.

52. arbitrariness: It is one of the design features of language. It means that there is no logical connection between meanings and sounds

53. Productivity: Language is productive or creative in that it makes possible the construction and interpretation of new signals by its users.

54. Displacement: Displacement means that language can be used to refer to things which are present or not present, real or imagined matters in the past, present, or future, or in far-away places. In other words, language can be used to refer to contexts removed from the immediate situations of the speaker

55. Duality: The duality nature of language means that language is a system, which consists of two sets of structure, or two levels, one of sounds and the other of meanings.

56. Design features: Design features refer to the defining properties of human language that distinguish it from any animal system of communication

57. Competence: Chomsky defines competence as the ideal user’s knowledge of the rules of his language,

58. Performance: performance is the actual realization of the knowledge of the rules in linguistic communication.

59. langue: Langue refers to the abstract linguistic system shared by all the members of a speech community; Langue is the set of conventions and rules which language users all have to follow; Langue is relatively stable, it does not change frequently

60. Parole: Parole refers to the realization of langue in actual use; parole is the concrete use of the

conventions and the application of the rules; parole varies from person to person, and from situation to situation.

Ⅴ. Answer the following questions as comprehensively as possible. Give examples for illustration if necessary:

61. Language is generally defined as a system of arbitrary vocal symbols used for human communication. Explain it in detail.

First of all, language is a system, because elements of language are combined according to rules. Secondly, language is arbitrary because there is no intrinsic connection between form and meaning, or between the sign and what it stands for. Different languages have different words for the same object in the world. This fact is a good illustration of the arbitrary nature of language. This also explains the symbolic nature of language: words are just symbols; they are associated with objects, actions, ideas, etc. by convention. Thirdly, language is vocal because the primary medium is sound for all languages, no matter how well-developed their writing systems are.

The term “human” in the definition indicates that language is possessed by human beings only and is very different fr om the communication systems of other living creatures. The term “communication” means that language makes it possible for its users to talk to each other and fulfil their commu-nicative needs. 62. What are the design features of human language? Illustrate them with examples.

(1) Arbitrariness

As mentioned earlier, the arbitrary property of language means that there is no logical connection between meanings and sounds. For instance, there is no necessary relationship between the word elephant and the animal it symbolizes. In addition, different sounds are used to refer to the same object in different languages, and even within the same language, the same sound does not refer to the same thing. However, language is not entirely arbitrary. There are words which are created in the imitation of sounds by sounds, such as crash, bang in English. Besides, some compound words are also not entirely arbitrary. But the non-arbitrary words are quite limited in number.

The arbitrary nature of language makes it possible for language to have an unlimited source of expressions.

(2) Productivity

Language is productive or creative in that it makes possible the con-struction and interpretation of new signals by its users. This is why they can produce and understand an infinitely large number of sentences, including sentences that they have never said or heard before. They can send messages which no one else has ever sent before.

Productivity is unique to human language. Most animal communication systems appear to be highly restricted with respect to the number of different signals that their users can send and receive.

(3) Duality

The duality nature of language means that language is a system, which consists of two sets of structure, or two levels, one of sounds and the other of meanings. At the lower or the basic level, there is the structure of sounds, which are meaningless, discrete, individual sounds. But the sounds of language can be combined according to rules into units of meaning such as morphemes and words, which, at the higher level, can be arranged into sentences. This duality of structure or double articulation of language enables its users to talk about anything within their knowledge. No animal communication system has duality or even comes near to possessing it.

(4) Displacement

Displacement means that language can be used to refer to things which are present or not present, real or imagined matters in the past, present, or future, or in far-away places. In other words, language can be used to refer to contexts removed from the immediate situations of the speaker. Animal calls are mainly uttered in response to immediate changes of situation.

(5) Cultural transmission

Human beings were born with the ability to acquire language, but the details of any language are not genetically transmitted or passed down by instinct. They have to be taught and learned, but animal call systems are genetically transmitted.

63. How is modern linguistics different from traditional grammar?

Traditional grammar is prescriptive; i t is based on “high” (religious, literary) written language. It sets grammatical rules and imposes the rules on language users. But Modern linguistics is descriptive; it collects authentic, and mainly spoken language data and then it studies and describes the data in an objective and scientific way.

64. How do you understand the distinction between a synchronic study and a diachronic study?

The description of a language at some point in time is a Synchronic study; the description of a language as it changes through time is a diachronic study. A synchronic study of language describes a language as it is at some particular point in time, while a diachronic study of language is the study of the historical development of language over a period of time.

65. Why does modern linguistics regard the spoken form of language as primary, not the written?

First, the spoken form is prior to the writ-ten form and most writing systems are derived from the spoken form of language.

Second, the spoken form plays a greater role than writing in terms of the amount of information conveyed and it serves a wider range of purposes

Finally, the spoken form is the medium through which we acquire our mother tongue.

66. What are the major distinctions between langue and parole?

The distinction between langue, and parole was made by the famous Swiss linguist Ferdinand de Saussure early this century. Langue refers to the abstract linguistic system shared by all the members of a speech community, and parole refers to the realization of langue in actual use. Langue is the set of conventions and rules which language users all have to follow while parole is the concrete use of the conventions and the application of the rules. Langue is abstract; it is not the language people actually use, but parole is concrete; it refers to the naturally occurring language events. Langue is relatively stable; it does not change frequently; while parole varies from person to person, and from situation to situation.

67. How do you understand competence and performance?

American linguist N. Chomsky in the late 1950’s proposed the distinction between competence and performance. Chomsky defines competence as the ideal user’s knowledge of the rules of his language. This internalized set of rules enables the language user to produce and understand an infinitely large number of sentences and recognize sentences that are ungrammatical and ambiguous. According to Chomsky, performance is the actual realization of this knowledge in linguistic communication. Although th e speaker’s knowledge of his mother tongue is perfect, his performances may have mistakes because of social and psychological factors such as stress, embarrassment, etc. Chomsky believes that what linguists should study is the competence, which is systematic, not the performance, which is too haphazard.

68. Saussure’s distinction between langue and parole seems similar to Chomsky’s distinction between competence and performance. What do you think are their major differences?

Although Saussure’s distinction and Chomsky’s are very similar, they differ at least in that Saussure took a sociological view of language and his notion of langue is a mater of social conventions, and Chomsky looks at language from a psychological point of vies and to him, competence is a property of the mind of each individual.

69. Do you think human language is entirely arbitrary? Why?

Language is arbitrary in nature, it is not entirely arbitrary, because there are a limited number of words whose connections between forms and meanings can be logically explained to a certain extent, for example, the onomatopoeia, words which are coined on the basis of imitation of sounds by sounds such as bang, crash, etc. Take compounds for another example. The two elements “photo” and “copy” in “photocopy” are non-motivated, but the compound is not arbitrary.

Chapter 2 Phonology:

Ⅰ. Decide whether each of the following statements is True or False:

1. T

2. F

3. F

4. F

5. T

6. T

7. F

8. F

9. T 10. F

11. F 12. T 13. F 14. F 15. F 16. F 17. T 18. F 19. T 20. T

Ⅱ. Fill in each of the following blanks with one word which begins with the letter given:

21. Aspiration 22. Articulatory 23. bilabial 24. tongue 25. place

26. stop 27. Suprasegmental 28. sequential 29. narrow 30. intonation

31. Phonology 32. oral 33. Tone 34. sentence

Ⅲ. There are four choices following each of the statements below. Mark the choice that can best complete the statement:

35. C 36. A 37. B 38. D 39. A 40. D 41. C 42. C 43. D 44. D

Ⅳ. Define the terms below:

45. phonology: Phonology studies the system of sounds of a particular language; it aims to discover how speech sounds in a language form patterns and how these sounds are used to convey meaning in linguistic communication.

46. phoneme: The basic unit in phonology is called phoneme; it is a unit of distinctive value. But it is an abstract unit. To be exact, a phoneme is not a sound; it is a collection of distinctive phonetic features. 47. allophone: The different phones which can represent a phoneme in different phonetic environments are called the allophones of that phoneme.

48. international phonetic alphabet: It is a standardized and internationally accepted system of phonetic transcription.

49. intonation: When pitch, stress and sound length are tied to the sentence rather than the word in isolation, they are collectively known as intonation.

50. phonetics: Phonetics is defined as the study of the phonic medium of language; it is concerned with all the sounds that occur in the world' s languages

51. auditory phonetics: It studies the speech sounds from the hearer's point of view. It studies how the sounds are perceived by the hear-er.

52. acoustic phonetics: It studies the speech sounds by looking at the sound waves. It studies the physical means by which speech sounds are transmitted through the air from one person to another.

53. phone: Phones can be simply defined as the speech sounds we use when speaking a language. A phone is a phonetic unit or segment. It does not necessarily distinguish meaning.

54. phonemic contrast: Phonemic contrast refers to the relation between two phonemes. If two phonemes can occur in the same environment and distinguish meaning, they are in phonemic contrast.

55. tone: Tones are pitch variations, which are caused by the differing rates of vibration of the vocal cords.

56. minimal pair: When two different forms are identical in every way except for one sound segment which occurs in the same place in the strings, the two words are said to form a minimal pair.

Ⅴ. Answer the following questions as comprehensively as possible. Give examples for illustration if necessary:

57. Of the two media of language, why do you think speech is more basic than writing?

1) In linguistic evolution, speech is prior to writing.

2) In everyday communication, speech plays a greater role than writing in terms of the amount of information conveyed.

3) Speech is always the way in which every native speaker acquires his mother tongue, and writing is learned and taught later at school.

58. What are the criteria that a linguist uses in classifying vowels?

1) V owels may be distinguished as front, central and back in terms of the position of the tongue in the

mouth.

2) According to how wide our mouth is opened, we classify the vowels into four groups: close vowels, semiclose vowels, semi-open vowels, and open vowels.

3) According to the shape of the lips, vowels are divided into rounded vowels and unrounded vowels.

4) The English vowels can also be classified into long vowels and short vowels according to the length of the sound.

59. What are the major differences between phonology and phonetics?

They differ in their approach and focus. Phonetics is of a general nature; it is interested in all the speech sounds used in all human languages: how they are produced, how they differ from each other, what phonetic features they possess, how they can be classified. Phonology, on the other hand, is interested in the system of sounds of a particular language; it aims to discover how speech sounds in a language form patterns and how these sounds are used to convey meaning in linguistic communication.

60. Illustrate with examples how suprasegmental features can affect meaning.

1) The location of stress in English distinguishes meaning, such as `import and im`port. The similar alternation of stress also occurs between a compound noun and a phrase consisting of the same elements.

A phonological feature of the English compounds, is that the stress of the word always falls on the first element and the second element receives secondary stress, for example: `blackbird is a particular kind of bird, which is not necessarily black, but a black `bird is a bird that is black.

2) The more important words such as nouns, verbs adjectives, adverbs, etc. are pronounced with greater force and made more prominent. But to give special emphasis to a certain notion, a word in sentence that is usually unstressed can be stressed to achieve different effect. Take the sentence “He is driving my car.” for example. To emphasize the fact that the car he is driving is not his, or yours, but mine, the speaker can stress the possessive pronoun my, which under normal circumstances is not stressed.

3) English has four basic types of intonation, known as the four tones: When spoken in different tones, the same sequence of words may have different meanings. Generally speaking, the falling tone indicates that what is said is a straight-forward, matter-of-fact statement, the rising tone often makes a question of what is said, and the fall-rise tone often indicates that there is an implied message in what is said.

61. In what way can we determine whether a phone is a phoneme or not?

A basic way to determine the phonemes of a language is to see if substituting one sound for another results in a change of meaning. If it does, the two sounds then represent different phonemes. Chapter 3 Morphology

Ⅰ. Decide whether each of the following statements is True or False:

1. T

2. F

3. T

4. T

5. T

6. T

7. T

8. F

9. F 10. T

Ⅱ. Fill in each blank below with one word which begins with the letter given:

11. Morpheme 12. grammatical 13. Bound 14. derivative 15. Derivative

16. suffix 17. Compounding 18. morphological 19. derivation 20. stem

Ⅲ. There are four choices following each statement. Mark the choice that can best complete the statement:

21. D 22. D 23. B 24. B 25. C 26. C 27. D 28. A 29. B 30. C

Ⅳ. Define the following terms:

31. Morphology: Morphology is a branch of grammar which studies the internal structure of words and the rules by which words are formed.

32. inflectional morphology: The inflectional morphology studies the inflections

33. derivational morphology: Derivational morphology is the study of word-formation.

34. Morpheme: It is the smallest meaningful unit of language.

35. free morpheme: Free morphemes are the morphemes which are independent units of meaning and can

be used freely all by themselves or in combination with other morphemes.

36. bound morpheme: Bound morphemes are the morphemes which cannot be used independently but have to be combined with other morphemes, either free or bound, to form a word.

37. Root: A root is often seen as part of a word; it can never stand by itself although it bears clear, definite meaning; it must be combined with another root or an affix to form a word.

38. Affix: Affixes are of two types: inflectional and derivational. Inflectional affixes manifest various grammatical relations or grammatical categories, while derivational affixes are added to an existing form to create a word.

39. Prefix: Prefixes occur at the beginning of a word. Prefixes modify the meaning of the stem, but they usually do not change the part of speech of the original word.

40. Suffix: Suffixes are added to the end of the stems; they modify the meaning of the original word and in many cases change its part of speech.

41. Derivation: Derivation is a process of word formation by which derivative affixes are added to an existing form to create a word.

42. Compounding: Compounding can be viewed as the combination of two or sometimes more than two words to create new words.

Ⅴ. Anwser the following questions:

43. What are the main features of the English compounds?

Orthographically a compound can be written as one word, two separate words with or without a hyphen in between. Syntactically, the part of speech of a compound is determined by the last element. Semantically, the meaning of a compound is idiomatic, not calculable from the meanings of all its components. Phonetically, the word stress of a compound usually falls on the first element.

44. Discuss the types of morphemes with examples.

Free morphemes: They are the independent units of meaning and can be used freely all by themselves, for example, “book-” in the word “bookish”.

Bound morphemes: They are those that cannot be used independently but have to be combined with other morphemes, either free or bound, to form a word such as “-ish” in “bookish”. Bound morphemes can be subdivided into roots and affixes. A root is seen as part of a word; it can never stand by itself although it has a clear and definite meaning, such as “gene-” in the word “generate”. Affixes are of two types: inflectional and derivational. Inflectional morphemes manifest various grammatical relations or grammatical categories such as “-s” in the word “books” to indicate plurality of nouns. Derivational affixes are added to an existing form to create a word such as “mis-” in the word “misinform”. Derivational affixes can also be divided into prefixes and suffixes. Prefixes occur at the beginning of a word such as “dis-” in the word “dislike”, while suffixes occur at the end of a word such as “-less” in the word “friendless”.

Chapter 4 Syntax

Ⅰ. Decide whether each of the following statements is True or False:

1. F

2. T

3. F

4. T

5. T

6. T

7. T

8. F

9. F 10. T

11. F 12. T 13. T 14. T

Ⅱ. Fill in each of the following blanks with one word which begins with the letter given:

15. simple 16. sentence 17. subject 18. predicate 19. complex 20. embedded

21. open 22. adjacency 23. Parameters 24. Case

Ⅲ. There are four given choices for each statement below. Mark the choice that can best complete the statement:

25. D 26. D 27. A 28. D 29. A 30. A 31. D 32. C 33. D 34. B

Ⅳ. Define the following terms:

35. syntax: Syntax is a subfield of linguistics. It studies the sentence structure of language. It consists of a

set of abstract rules that allow words to be combined with other words to form grammatical sentences. 36. Sentence: A sentence is a structurally independent unit that usually comprises a number of words to form a complete statement, question or command. Normally, a sentence consists of at least a subject and a predicate which contains a finite verb or a verb phrase.

37. coordinate sentence: A coordinate sentence contains two clauses joined by a linking word called coordinating conjunction, such as “and”, “but”, “or”.

38. syntactic categories: Apart from sentences and clauses, a syntactic category usually refers to a word (called a lexical category) or a phrase (called a phrasal category) that performs a particular grammatical function.

39. grammatical relations: The structural and logical functional relations of constituents are called grammatical relations. The grammatical relations of a sentence concern the way each noun phrase in the sentence relates to the verb. In many cases, grammatical relations in fact refer to who does what to whom.

40. linguistic competence: Universally found in the grammars of all human languages, syntactic rules comprise the system of internalized linguistic knowledge of a language speaker known as linguistic competence.

41. Transformational rules: Transformational rules are the rules that transform one sentence type into another type.

42. D-structure: D-structure is the level of syntactic representation that exists before movement takes place. Phrase structure rules, with the insertion of the lexicon, generate sentences at the level of D-structure.

Ⅴ. Answer the following questions:

43. What are the basic components of a sentence?

Normally, a sentence consists of at least a subject and its predicate which contains a finite verb or a verb phrase.

44. What are the major types of sentences? Illustrate them with examples.

Traditionally, there are three major types of sentences. They are simple sentence, coordinate (compound) sentence, and complex sentence. A simple sentence consists of a single clause which contains a subject and a predicate and stands alone as its own sentence, for example:

John reads extensively.

A coordinate sentence contains two clauses joined by a linking word that is called coordinating conjunction, such as “and”, “but”, “or”. For example:

John is reading a linguistic book, and Mary is preparing for her history exam.

A complex sentence contains two, or more, clauses, one of which is incorporated into the other. The two clauses in a complex sentence do not have equal status, one is subordinate to the other. For example: Before John gave her a lecture, Mary showed no interest in linguistics.

45. Are the elements in a sentence linearly structured? Why?

No. Language is both linearly and hierarchically structured. When a sentence is uttered or written down, the words of the sentence are produced one after another in a sequence. A closer examination of a sentence shows that a sentence is not composed of sequence of words arranged in a simple linear order with one adding onto another following a simple arithmetic logic. In fact, sentences are also hierarchically structured. They are organized by grouping together words of the same syntactic category, such as noun phrase (NP) or verb phrase (VP), as can be seen from the following tree diagram:

S

NP VP

Det N Vt NP

Det N

The boy likes the music.

46. What are the advantages of using tree diagrams in the analysis of sentence structures?

The tree diagram can not only reveal a linear order, but also a hierarchical structure that groups words into structural constituents. It can, in addition, show the syntactic category of each structural constituent, thus it is believed to most truthfully illustrate the constituent relationship among linguistic elements. 47. What is NP movement. Illustrate it with examples.

NP movement involves the movement of a noun phrase. NP-movement occurs when, for example, a sentence changes from the active voice to the passive voice:

(A) The man beat the child.

(B) The child was beaten by the man.

B is the result of the movement of the noun phrases “the man” and “the child” from their original positions in (A) to new positions. That is, “the man” is postposed to the right and “the child” is preposed to the left.

Not all instances of NP-movement, however, are related to changing a sentence from the active voice to the passive voice. For example:

(C) It seems they are quite fit for the job.

(D) They seem quite fit for the job.

These sentences are identical in meaning, but different in their superficial syntactic representations. It is believed that they have the same underlying structure, but (27b) is the result of an NP movement.

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