The Explanation of Linguistic Causes (inbunden)
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The Explanation of Linguistic Causes (inbunden)

The Explanation of Linguistic Causes

Az-Zaggagi's Theory of Grammar. Introduction, translation, commentary

Inbunden Engelska, 1995-05-01
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The ultimate aim of every linguistic tradition is to go beyond the purely descriptive level and seek an explanation for linguistic phenomena. Traditions differ, however, with regard to the class of linguistic phenomena they wish to explain and the framework in which they define their explanation. In this volume the English translation is presented of the treatise on linguistic explanation by the 10th-century Arab grammarian az-Zaggagi, one of the most original thinkers of the Arabic tradition. He worked in a period in which the influence of Greek logic and philosophy made itself felt in almost all Arabo-Islamic disciplines. Some of the problems he deals with are familiar to modern linguists (e.g., morphological segmentation, categorization of parts of speech), others are comprehensible only within the frame of reference of Arabic linguistics (e.g., the declension of the verb). An extensive commentary on the text analyzes the problems discussed, both within the Arabic tradition and from the point of view of modern linguistics. Apart from the index of names and terms, there is an index of subjects which enables the general reader to consult text and comments on specific key notions.
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1. Preface; 2. Introduction: Az-Zaggagi and his book on the explanation of linguistic causes; 3. Notes; 4. The Book of Explanation of Linguistic Causes; 5. Introduction; 6. Notes; 7. I. The parts of speech; 8. Notes; 9. II. The disagreement of the grammarians about the definitions of noun, verb and particle; 10. Notes; 11. III. The knowledge of the definitions of noun, verb and particle; 12. Notes; 13. IV. The theories about the verb and the infinitive: which one of them is derived from the other?; 14. Notes; 15. V. The theory of linguistic causes; 16. Notes; 17. VI. The theory about declension and speech: which one of them is prior to the other?; 18. Notes; 19. VII. The theory about the declension: why was it introduced into speech?; 20. Notes; 21. VIII. The theory about the declension: is it a vowel or a consonant?; 22. Notes; 23. IX. The theory about the declension: why does it occur at the end of the word, rather than at the beginning or in the middle?; 24. Notes; 25. X. The theory about [the problem] which of these three parts - the noun, the verb and the particle: is entitled to declension?; 26. Notes; 27. XI. The theory about the noun, the verb and the particle: which one of them comes first in rank and hierarchy?; 28. Notes; 29. XII. The theory concerning the verbs: which one of them is prior to the others?; 30. Notes; 31. XIII. The present verb and its real nature; 32. Notes; 33. XIV. What is the reason for calling grammar nahw?; 34. Notes; 35. XV. The difference between 'grammar', 'lexicography', 'declension' and 'glosses'; 36. Notes; 37. XVI. The theory about the lexical meaning of the [words] 'nominative', 'accusative' and 'genitive'; 38. Notes; 39. XVII. The use of learning grammar; 40. Notes; 41. XVIII. The reason for the introduction of nunation into speech, and its different aspects; 42. Notes; 43. XIX. The reason for the heaviness of the verb and the lightness of the noun; 44. Notes; 45. XX. The reason why nouns cannot have a jussive; 46. Notes; 47. XXI. The reason why verbs cannot have a genitive; 48. Notes; 49. XXII. The theory about the dual and the plural; 50. Notes; 51. XXIII. The theory about the 'alif, the y and the w in the dual and the plural: are they the declension or the consonants of the declension?; 52. Notes; 53. Selected problems; 54. Notes; 55. List of references; 56. A) Primary sources; 57. B) Secondary sources; 58. Abbreviations; 59. Index of names; 60. Index of subjects; 61. Index of terms