Voice in Morphology (definition)
Voice, in its morphosyntactic sense, describes alternations in the alignment of thematic relations and grammatical relations within a clause. Traditionally, this includes active voice and passive voice, while Scottish Gaelic and other languages also have an impersonal voice. However, many linguists consider these voices to be part of a much broader category of valence changing operations.
- 1a) Jones painted a picture.
- 1b) A picture was painted (by Jones).
Consider some examples from English. (1a) is a sentence in the active voice. Active voice sentences align noun phrases which take the agent (or more agent-like) thematic relation with the subject grammatical relation. The passive version in (1b) changes this alignment; in the passive voice, noun phrases which are more theme-like are treated as subjects. Note also that the passive voice reduces the valence of the verb (i.e., the number of noun phrases it requires).
- Valence Changing Operation (definition)
- Thematic Relation (definition)
- Grammatical Relation (definition)
The link below takes you away from the Gaelic Wiki to Wikipedia. Since wikipedia pages can be edited by anyone, they often contain inaccurate information. So be careful!
- wikipedia article on Voice: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grammatical_voice
- Crystal, D. (2008) Dictionary of Linguistics and Phonetics. 6th Edition. Wiley-Blackwell.
- Carnie, A. (2013) Syntax: A Generative Introduction. 3rd Edition. Wiley Blackwell.