The Most Prominent Theta Roles in the Sindhi Language: The Hierarchy

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of English, Faculty of Languages and Linguistics, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

2 Department of Education, Faculty of Arts and Education, Bauchi State University, Gadau, Nigeria


Abstract This paper focuses on the most prominent theta roles used in the Sindhi language. The study attempts to answer to the research question, ‘How are theta roles prominently used in the Sindhi language?’ The data come from the young native Sindhi speakers. Each verb phrase in the data is examined with the help of Carnie’s (2007) ‘Theta Roles and Thematic Relations’ in order to find the prominent theta roles in the Sindhi language. The study finds six prominent theta roles in Sindhi; namely, agent, theme, beneficiary, recipient, goal and locative. According to the findings of Rappaport Hovav (2007), the hierarchy of the theta roles in English is: Agent> Recipient>Experiencer/Goal>Instrument>Patient/Theme>Place; while, the hierarchy of the prominent theta roles in the Sindhi language is: agent>theme>beneficiary>recipient> locative>goal. This finding is not, however, definitive, i.e. broader studies are to be carried out to find the precise hierarchy of the theta roles in Sindhi.


  • Receive Date: 14 December 2015
  • Revise Date: 08 January 2015
  • Accept Date: 10 February 2015
  • First Publish Date: 01 December 2015