Tagung zum Thema Wortbildung /

Conference on word formation

Bern, 5. / 6. Februar 2014


Owoeye, Samuel Tuesday
Ota, Nigeria
Morphological competition, blocking and resistance, the case of agent nouns formation in French and Yoruba

For a long time, derivational morphologists have continually reiterated the existence of morphological competition among affixes that share similar syntactic and semantic configurations. As consequences of the phenomenon, two morphological notions have been engendered: blocking and resistance. While some affixes struggle to block the potentials of some others, the latter work to resist the blocking of their potential formations in a reciprocal manner. In this study, we examine the three scenarios of morphological competition, blocking and resistance as they relate to the agent nouns formation in French and Yoruba. French is a Romance language while Yoruba is Niger-Congo. Our analysis is rooted in the Lexeme-Based Morphological theory and our materials have been sourced from le Trésor de la Langue Française informatisé and the Dictionary of the Yoruba Language for French and Yoruba agent nouns respectively. Analysis done, tshe study shows that though these two languages do not belong to the same language family, they both make use of derivational affixes to form a large number of their words. Using the agent nouns formation affixes as a case study, our findings show that affixes in each of the languages engage in competition among themselves. We also observe that the other two notions of blocking and resistance have empirical examples in both languages.

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