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Moribund Germanic Heritage Languages in North America

Theoretical Perspectives and Empirical Findings

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Edited by B. Richard Page and Michael T. Putnam

The contributions in Moribund Germanic Heritage Languages in North America advance the ever-expanding research program in formal and theoretical treatments of heritage language grammars through in-depth empirical investigations. The core focus on moribund varieties of heritage Germanic languages extends beyond the exploration of the individual heritage language grammars and contributes to larger discussions in the field of Germanic linguistics.

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Edited by Olga Borik and Berit Gehrke

This volume brings together recent research on the semantics and syntax of pseudo-incorporation (PI), which is a construction of crucial significance for linguistic explorations as it brings together several fundamental areas of linguistic research, such as morphology, argument structure, modification, discourse and information structure. The main purpose of the book is to further improve our understanding of the phenomenon, expand the domain of inquiry by bringing into focus new empirical data from a wide array of languages, offer new formal analyses of PI, and strengthen the links with other related phenomena, such as bare nominals. Focusing on various properties of PI the articles in this volume set an excellent ground for further expansion of research in PI and related topics.

Contributors are Michael Barrie, Olga Borik, Veneeta Dayal, Carmen Dobrovie-Sorin, Werner Frey, Berit Gehrke, Ion Giurgea, Audrey Li, Fereshteh Modarresi, Olav Mueller-Reichau, Natalia Serdobolskaya, and Henriëtte de Swart.

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Edited by Marilyn Manley and Antje Muntendam

Quechua Expressions of Stance and Deixis explores the semantics and pragmatics of Southern Quechua and Ecuadorian Quichua expressions, considered as markers of stance and deixis. This volume is the first to study a broad range of stance/deictic phenomena in Peruvian and Bolivian Quechua and Ecuadorian Quichua in-depth, with examples that have been elicited as well as captured from natural discourse. Each chapter investigates these expressions through fieldwork and experimental studies, many employing original methodologies. As such, this work stands as an important contribution to the study of an endangered language.

Multiple Object Constructions in P’orhépecha

Argument Realization and Valence-Affecting Morphology

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Alejandra Capistrán

In Multiple Object Constructions in P’orhépecha, Capistrán offers a detailed description of double and triple object clauses in P’orhépecha, a Mesoamerican isolate with a case system lacking an accusative-dative distinction. Regarding argument realization, Capistrán discusses alternating constructions and a construction split triggered by the person hierarchy. Valence-affecting operations—applicative, causative/instrumental and part-whole lexical suffixes—are examined, highlighting the person features of applicative suffixes and the complex part-whole morphology. Capistrán’s analysis demonstrates that in P’orhépecha most object coding properties show a neutral pattern, while all behavioral properties present asymmetries that shape a secundative pattern or PO/SO alignment. Capistrán argues that the strong tendency in P’orhépecha to determine PO selection according to a thematic ranking helps explain the (un)grammaticality of tritransitive constructions.

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Lily Kahn

A Grammar of the Eastern European Hasidic Hebrew Tale provides the first detailed linguistic analysis of the Hebrew narrative literature composed in late nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Eastern Europe by followers of the Hasidic spiritual movement. It presents a thorough description of Hasidic Hebrew orthography, morphology, syntax, and lexis illustrated with extensive examples. Attention is devoted to the relationship between Hasidic Hebrew and its biblical, rabbinic, and medieval antecedents; to its links with Aramaic, contemporaneous Maskilic Hebrew, and its authors’ native Yiddish; and to its contributions to Modern (Israeli) Hebrew. The grammar fills a major scholarly gap on the diachronic development of Hebrew and as such will be a key resource for anyone interested in the language’s history.

The Verb and the Paragraph in Biblical Hebrew

A Cognitive-Linguistic Approach

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Elizabeth Robar

"Research on the function and semantics of the verbal system in Hebrew (and Semitics in general) has been in constant ferment since McFall’s 1982 work The Enigma of the Hebrew Verbal System. Elizabeth Robar's analysis provides the best solution to this point, combining cognitive linguistics, cross-linguistics, diachronic and synchronic analysis. Her solution is brilliant, innovative, and supremely satisfying in interpreting all the data with great explanatory power. Let us hope this research will be quickly implemented in grammars of Hebrew."

Peter J. Gentry, Donald L. Williams Professor of Old Testament Interpretation, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, Louisville, KY.

In The Verb and the Paragraph in Biblical Hebrew, Elizabeth Robar employs cognitive linguistics to unravel the notorious grammatical quandary in biblical Hebrew: explaining the waw consecutive, as well as other poorly understood verbal forms (e.g. with paragogic suffixes).

She explains that languages must communicate the shape of thought units: including the prototypical paragraph, with its beginning, middle and ending; and its message. She demonstrates how the waw consecutive is both simpler and more nuanced than often argued. It neither foregrounds nor is a preterite, but it enables highly embedded textual structures. She also shows how allegedly anomalous forms may be used for thematic purposes, guiding the reader to the author’s intended interpretation for the text as it stands.


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Anna Bauer

In The Morphosyntax of the Noun Phrase in Hieroglyphic Luwian Anna H. Bauer provides a full and detailed account of the noun phrases in Hieroglyphic Luwian, an Anatolian language attested mainly in inscriptions from the first millennium BC. The available material is analysed according to the different elements found in the NP, and a chapter each is devoted to determination, quantification, modification and apposition.
Along with discussing the structures from a synchronic point of view, Anna Bauer also draws parallels to neighbouring languages and ongoing changes within HLuwian itself. It is shown how other languages have left their mark on HLuwian and how that influences the HLuwian system.

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Edited by Lev Michael and Tania Granadillo

Negation in Arawak Languages presents detailed descriptions of negation constructions in nine Arawak languages (Apurinã, Garifuna, Kurripako, Lokono, Mojeño Trinitario, Nanti, Paresi, Tariana, and Wauja), as well as an overview of negation in this major language family. Functional-typological in orientation, each descriptive chapter in the volume is based on fieldwork by authors in the communities in which the languages are spoken. Chapters describe standard negation, prohibitives, existential negation, negative indefinites, and free negation, as well as language-specific negation phenomena such as morphological privatives, the interaction of negation with verbal inflectional categories, and negation in clause-linking constructions.

Informed by typological approaches to negation, this volume will be of interest to specialists in Arawak languages, typologists, historical linguists, and theoretical linguists.

Die Vorgeschichte des slavischen Aoristsystems

mit der kommentierten Belegsammlung der Aoristformen und Formen des präteritalen passiven Partizipiums im Altkirchenslavischen

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Katja Ackermann

Die Vorgeschichte des slavischen Aoristsystems proposes a new look on the paradigmatic organization of the finite verb in Proto-Slavic. It rests on the study of the diachronic and synchronic conditioning of paradigmatic preferences of Proto-Slavic primary verbs and is shown to account for the complementary distribution of partially syncretistic aorist stem formations into six classes (bases of the systematic description adopted here). Major development trends reveal clear parallels with other Indo-European branches. Along with the discussion of paradigmatic constellations, diachronic background, etymology and grammar, the work comprises a nearly complete attestation of aorists and past participles of primary verbs including prefixal compounds in canonic OCS and those outside the canon, and is designed as an extensive reference book both for Indo-Europeanists and Slavists.

Die Vorgeschichte des slavischen Aoristsystems bietet eine neue systematische Beschreibung des älteren gemeinslavischen Verbalsystems aus synchroner und diachroner Perspektive. Im Zentrum steht die nahezu vollständige Erfassung und Bewertung der Aoristformen des Altkirchenslavischen. Sie erscheinen hier in neuer paradigmatischer Klassifikation (in sechs Klassen), mit ausführlicher Dokumentation ihrer Beleglage und ihrer synchronischen Oppositionen (: Präsens- und Infinitivstämmen, Partizipien). Die systematische und historische Konditionierung der paradigmatischen Präferenzen primärer Verbalstammbildungen wird neu beleuchtet.
Ihre sprachgeschichtliche Verankerung wird im Vergleich mit inner- und außerslavischen Entsprechungen nach dem aktuellen Stand – unter Einschluss der Prosodie – dargestellt. Das Buch eignet sich als Referenzorgan zum slavischen Verbum für Slavisten, Indoeuropäisten und allgemeine Sprachwissenschaftler.

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Henk Zeevat

An utterance is normally produced by a speaker in linear time and the hearer normally correctly identifies the speaker intention in linear time and incrementally. This is hard to understand in a standard competence grammar since languages are highly ambiguous and context-free parsing is not linear. Deterministic utterance generation from intention and n-best Bayesian interpretation, based on the production grammar and the prior probabilities that need to be assumed for other perception do much better. The proposed model uses symbolic grammar and derives symbolic semantic representations, but treats interpretation as just another form of perception. Removing interpretation from grammar is not only empirically motivated, but also makes linguistics a much more feasible enterprise.

The importance of Henk Zeevat's new monograph cannot be overstated. Its combination of breadth, formal rigor, and originality is unparalleled in work on the form-meaning interface in human language...Zeevat's is the first proposal which provides a computationally feasible integrated treatment of production and comprehension for pragmatics, semantics, syntax, and even phonology. I recommend it to anyone who combines interests in language, logic, and computation with a sense of adventure. David Beaver, University of Texas at Austin