Thematic Roles and Grammatical Features of Cursing and Blessing Speech Acts in Kurdish (Ilami Dialect)

Shahla Sharifi, Amir Karimipour


Cursing and blessing are two common speech acts seen in many languages. Due to specific nature of these expressions, many linguistic and non-linguistic (e.g. religious) arguments have been proposed in order to study and scrutinize these structures from different perspectives. This article aims to analyze cursing and blessing speech acts in Ilami dialect of Kurdish. In this paper both structural and semantic components of Ilami cursing and blessing will be discussed. Since the communicative role of such expressions is of great importance, we tried to distinguish the theta roles of cursing and blessing like agent, patient, function, goal and cause of such speech acts. Results show that blessing and especially cursing are very diverse in this dialect and they can serve several functions and goals while uttered but there can be seen some more frequent patterns in these utterances. It was also concluded that cursing and blessing share some common grammatical features. Affected by cultural and social factors, a large number of cursing and blessing expressions are no longer understood literally and they should be treated as idiomatic expressions.

Key words: Kurdish; Speech acts; Cursing; Blessing; Thematic roles; Grammatical features


Kurdish; Speech acts; Cursing; Blessing; Thematic roles; Grammatical features


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