Language and Linguistics

Binding languages and their usage with classification and Types

Linguistics is known as the scientific study of the structure of natural languages, as well as all its aspects, such as their historical evolution, the handling that people have of them and other related aspects. In his research, different perspectives of languages ​​are analyzed, such as lexicon, morphology and phonology, among others . In this article we will let you know about Binding languages and their usage.

Within linguistics we find morphology as the discipline that studies the internal structure of words . Define and classify the elements or units within the word, the kinds of words it originates, as well as the formation of new words.

From a morphological perspective, languages ​​can be classified as:

  • Monosyllabic languages : whose primary characteristic is that all their words are of a single syllable.
  • Agglutinating languages : their name is due to the fact that they join two, three or more words in one, forming a word-phrase.
  • Inflection languages : these are languages ​​that share the same roots and morphemes.

Typological classification of languages

Many studies point to a division or classification between languages, separating them into isolating, binding or binders and flexible. These studies began with Adam Smith (1761) and developed from the 19th century, especially in Germany, through the brothers Freidrich and August Schlegel. They, based on the structural comparison between languages ​​(Lyons, 1979), define types and classify a language as if it belonged to a single type. These studies can be identified as typological classification of languages. And this classification seeks to describe various linguistic types found between languages, based on a single grammatical parameter.

In the opinion of the Romanian linguist Eugênio Coseriu, this is a “typological distinction of general validity.” Since then it has been possible for him to make the dichotomies “syntactic languages” and “morphological languages”, “paradigmatic languages” and “syntagmatic languages” which, ultimately, are nothing more than the distinction between ancient languages ​​(such as Greek, Latin and Sanskrit) and modern European (French, English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, etc.), with the word as the basic unit. It is this tripartite Schlegel classification that gives rise to the formulation of the “classical” morphological classification of language types: isolating (or monosyllabic), joining, inflection (or fusion), and polysynthetic.

Insulating tongues have no flex . These languages ​​are translated by having a single slogan or, consequently, in which a single morpheme occurs, the realization of a lexeme. In other words, in these types of languages ​​there are generally no stuck morphemes. Chinese and Vietnamese are examples of analog or isolating languages.

Binder languages ​​attach commonly invariant affixes to a stem , so that there can be several easily identifiable morphemes in a word. Otherwise, the word is made up of morphs, each representing a morpheme, preserving the phonological identity of the morphs. Therefore, it is the mismatch between morphemes and certain word segments. Turkish, Japanese, and Hungarian are generally classified as binders.

In flexible languages, morphemes are represented by affixes s. In this case, it is difficult to accurately identify the different parts of the affixes. Examples of inflectional languages ​​include Russian, Latin, and Ancient Greek. In the Latin phrase Puellam bellam amo (‘I love the beautiful girl’), the ending – am, in the noun and adjective, feminine mark, singular and accusatory and the ending – that of the verb refers to the first person singular, subject and present tense. Latin words cannot be segmented into morphs, but arbitrarily, and this is what differentiates flexible languages ​​from binders. This is not a difference in grammatical structure between the ‘flex’ and ‘binder’ languages, but rather in the way the minimum grammatical units are represented, either phonologically or graphically.

Polysynthetics (or incorporators) are languages ​​that make extensive use of affixes and often incorporate what other languages ​​would express through nouns and adverbs into elements that resemble verbs. The polysynthetics are Inuktitut (Ireland) and some Native American languages.

The linguist Edward Sapir (1921) reviewed the morphological typology of the 19th century and divided the morphological properties into two independent parameters, arriving at three types of languages ​​in terms of the number of morphemes: analytic (one morpheme per word), synthetic (a small number of ). morphemes by words) and polysynthetics (a large number of morphemes, particularly many roots, per word) They distinguished four types in terms of morpheme change: isolation (no fixation), binder (simple fixation), fusional (considerable morphophonemic alterations), and symbolic (supplementary). It is, in fact, a refinement of what had been done before, resulting in a complex typology of languages ​​that allows us to show how they express different types of concepts: ‘concrete’, ‘derived’ and purely relational.

Morphological classification of languages

Monosyllabic languages ​​represent the most basic and elementary form of spoken language . They do not have prefixes, suffixes or any other element that indicates a relationship, which makes the meaning of each word invariable.

In these languages, words are made up of several elements , a primary one that expresses the main idea, and the rest that represent ideas of relationship. But in no case do the words that enter the composition lose their original meaning, nor do they undergo changes in their form, which makes it easy to separate them when they come together.

In inflection languages ​​there are also several elements as in these languages, but unlike them, when the elements are joined, some completely lose their meaning, others modify it, and all of them undergo morphological changes that make it very difficult to separate the elements that make it up. Always one of these elements is the main or the root, while the rest are accessory elements that are used to express ideas of number, gender or time, among others.

So, we have that monosyllabic languages ​​present words of a single syllable with a meaning that is unique and invariable per word. Then we have the binders, where the words have several syllables and which represent in addition to a main idea, secondary ideas according to the amount of elements that they bring together , without losing each element its own meaning or its shape, being able to use such elements in the same way. way alone than agglutinated.

And finally, we have the inflection languages, which present words and elements fused to such a degree that they become a single organism; They cannot be separated without losing their meaning.

Characteristics of binding languages

To better understand the structure of the agglutinating languages, it is necessary to review some basic concepts of the language:

  • Phoneme : it is the minimum articulation of a sound, be it vowel or consonant.
  • Moneme : it is the minimal sequence or abstract transformation of a phoneme, which, when applied, causes a systematic change of meaning wherever it is applied.
  • Lexeme : denotes the root or meaning of the word. It is what gives an understandable idea of ​​what the word conveys.
  • Affixes : correspond to linguistic sequences that are prepended (prefixes), postponed (suffixes) or inserted (infixes) in a lexeme to alter its meaning.

Well, as we have already pointed out before, in these languages ​​the words have several syllables and represent in addition to a main idea, secondary ideas according to the amount of elements that they bring together. That is, in this type of language, words are formed by joining independent monemes , lexemes, and affixes, each with a perfectly defined grammatical or referential meaning.

This results in word meanings generally easier to deduce when compared to inflection languages, allowing for modifications to the phonetics or spelling of one or more morphemes within a word, usually by shortening the word or providing easier pronunciation. .

A common trait in these types of languages ​​is that they tend to have a high rate of affixes or morphemes per word . It is also noteworthy that they are very regular, particularly with very few irregular verbs. For example, the Japanese have very few irregular verbs: only two are significantly irregular. Korean has only ten irregular conjugation forms, except for passive and causal conjugations. Georgian is an exception; it is very clumping (with up to eight morphemes per word), but has a significant number of irregular verbs with varying degrees of irregularity.

Types of binding languages

At present there are countries, regions and races that use them such as Guarani, Japanese, Turkish, Esperanto, Korean, Uralic languages, Quechua languages, Basque, Dravidian languages, Aymara, Chibcha languages , Nahuatl and Swahili, among others.

An example of an agglutinating language can be found in the Basque language, in which we can build a large number of variations using a single word as a base, such as the word “ etxe ” (house):

  • etxe : house
  • etxea : the house
  • etxeak : the houses
  • etxeko : of the house (belonging to the house)
  • etxera : towards the house
  • etxerako : that goes to the house
  • etxetik : from the house
  • etxeraino : to the house

Another example, this time a little more complex, is that of the Aymara language, which uses the form “ iskuylankañapkama ” to say “while he / she is at school”, and which is possible to segment into the morphemes “ iskuyla-n (a) -ka-ña-p (a) -kama ”, where:

  • iskuyla: school.
  • n (a): in.
  • ka: converts what precedes ” iskuylan ” into a verb .
  • ña: converts the previous content into a state: “be in school”.
  • p (a): to denote possessive, third person: his (in the example, he or she).
  • kama: it is a grouping morpheme, which can be translated as “while” .áBinding languages. Morphological classification of languages. Characteristics and types

exte in Basque and iskuyla in Aymara), surrounded by various elements, each with an individual meaning, that modify the root of the word, and whose meaning does not change whether they are used with these words or individually.

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