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Cornell University    
  Feb 22, 2018
Courses of Study 2017-2018
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ARAB 4225 - [Comparative Semitic Linguistics]

(crosslisted) LING 4225  
(GHB) (HA-AS) (CU-ITL)     
Spring. Not offered 2017-2018. 4 Credits. Student option grading.

Prerequisite: one introductory linguistics course and familiarity with two or more Semitic languages.

M. Younes.

In this course we’ll compare specific aspects of the phonology, morphology, syntax and lexicon of the Semitic languages. In phonology, we’ll examine certain phonological phenomena like sound correspondences, syllable structure and vowel deletion and insertion in the various languages. In morphology, we’ll focus on root and pattern morphology, common verbal and nominal forms and derivations and pluralization. In syntax we’ll examine definiteness, person and tense marking, the construct phrase, different types of agreement, as well as the thorny issue of case. The lexical comparison will particularly be useful in helping students improve their command of one language once they have mastered the corresponding form in another, as, for example, in Arabic ثلاثة (thalaatha), Hebrew שלושה (shlosha), Syriac ܬܠܬܐ (tlaatha), and Ge’ez ሠለስቱ (shalastu).

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