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During several decades, syntactic reconstruction has been more or less regarded as a bootless and an unsuccessful venture, not least due to the heavy criticism in the 1970s from scholars like Watkins, Jeffers, Lightfoot, etc. This fallacious view culminated in Lightfoot’s (2002: 625) conclusion: “[i]f somebody thinks that they can reconstruct grammars more successfully and in more widespread fashion, let them tell us their methods and show us their results. Then we’ll eat the pudding.” This volume provides methods for the identification of i) cognates in syntax, and ii) the directionality of syntactic change, showcasing the results in the introduction and eight articles. These examples are offered as both tastier and also more nourishing than the pudding Lightfoot had in mind when discarding the viability of reconstructing syntax.
The book is a grammar of the Makasar language, spoken by about 2 million people in South Sulawesi, Indonesia. Makasarese is a head–marking language which marks arguments on the predicate with a system of pronominal clitics, following an ergative/absolutive pattern. Full noun phrases are relatively free in order, while pre-predicate focus position which is widely used. The phonology is notable for the large number of geminate and pre–glottalised consonant sequences, while the morphology is characterised by highly productive affixation and pervasive encliticisation of pronominal and aspectual elements. The work draws heavily on literary sources reaching back more than three centuries; this tradition includes two Indic based scripts, a system based on Arabic, and various Romanised conventions.
Embodiment in Cross-Linguistic Studies: The ‘Head’ edited by Iwona Kraska-Szlenk adds to linguistic studies on embodied cognition and conceptualization while focusing on one body part term from a comparative perspective. The ‘head’ is investigated as a source domain for extending multiple concepts in various target domains accessed via metaphor or metonymy. The contributions in the volume provide comparative and case studies based on analyses of the first-hand data from languages representing all continents and diversified linguistic groups, including endangered languages of Africa, Australia and Americas. The book offers new reflections on the relationship between embodiment, cultural situatedness and universal tendencies of semantic change. The findings contribute to general research on metaphor, metonymy, and polysemy within a paradigm of cognitive linguistics.
Malay Language, Jawi Script, and Islamic Factionalism from the 19th Century to the Present
In this monograph Philipp Bruckmayr examines the development of Cambodia’s Muslim minority from the mid-19th to the 21st century. During this period Cambodia’s Cham and Chvea Muslims established strong relationships with Malay centers of Islamic learning in Patani, Kelantan and Mecca. During the 1970s to the early 1990s these longstanding relationships came to a sudden halt due to civil war and the systematic Khmer Rouge repression. Since the 1990s ties to the Malay world have been revived and new Islamic currents, including Salafism and Tablighism, have left their mark on contemporary Cambodian Islam. Bruckmayr traces how these dynamics resulted inter alia in a history of local Islamic factionalism, culminating in the eventual state recognition of two separate Islamic congregations in the late 1990s.
Author: Hannah Sarvasy
A Grammar of Nungon is the most comprehensive modern reference grammar of a language of northeast Papua New Guinea. Nungon is a previously-undescribed Finisterre-Huon Papuan language spoken by about 1,000 people in the Saruwaged Mountains, Morobe Province. Hannah Sarvasy provides a rich description of the language in its cultural context, based on original immersion fieldwork. The exposition is extraordinarily thorough, covering phonetics, phonology, word classes, morphology, grammatical relations, switch-reference, valency, complex predicates, clause combining, possession, information structure, and the pragmatics of communication. Four complete interlinearized Nungon monologues and dialogues supplement the copious textual examples. A Grammar of Nungon sets a new standard of thoroughness for reference works on languages of this region.
English in Malaysia: Current Use and Status offers an account of the English language used in present-day West and East Malaysia and its status anchored in different linguistic, social and educational domains. After an Introduction giving a bird’s eye view of the status of English in Malaysia, the eight main chapters offer case studies revolving around four themes:
i. linguistic features, with special focus on pronunciation and language contact;
ii. language attitudes;
iii. English in on-line discourse; and
iv. English and language policies.

The chapters cover original data and topics, seeking to draw an accurate portrait of Malaysian English, a non-native variety of postcolonial English that is currently developing its pronunciation, grammar, lexis and distinct identity.
This study of traditional literature in Pakpak-Dairi, an endangered North Sumatran language, is based on written and oral versions of stories. Discussing the views of well-known scholars of Sumatran languages, the book includes the texts of seven stories which were collected in North Sumatra by the well-known linguist Herman Neubronner van der Tuuk (1824-1894) and are kept in Leiden University Library.
The book also contains a story performed in the village of Sukarame by Sonang Sitakar, who may well have been one of the last Pakpak-Dairi storytellers. Presenting unique information on an endangered literary genre from North Sumatra.
A Dictionary of the Kedang Language presents the first extensive published record of an Austronesian language on the remote Eastern Indonesian island of Lembata. A special interest of the dictionary resides in the fact that Kedang lies on the boundary line between Austronesian and Papuan languages in Eastern Indonesia. The Kedang entries are translated first into Indonesian and then into English. For ease of access, finder lists are provided in Indonesian and in English. The Introduction situates the language linguistically and sketches the phonology and morphology, as well as the 'pairing' (dyadic sets) in ritual and everyday usage of items of vocabulary characteristic of Kedang.
Every language has a way of talking about seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting and touching. In about a quarter of the world's languages, grammatical evidentials express means of perception. In some languages verbs of vision subsume cognitive meanings. In others, cognition is associated with a verb of auditory perception, touch, or smell. 'Vision' is not the universally preferred means of perception. In numerous cultures, taboos are associated with forbidden visual experience. Vision may be considered intrusive and aggressive, and linked with power. In contrast, 'hearing' and 'listening' are the main avenues for learning, understanding and 'knowing'. The studies presented in this book set out to explore how these meanings and concepts are expressed in languages of Africa, Oceania, and South America.
A Syntactic Account of Malagasy Nominalizations
This book provides a detailed study of nominalizing patterns in Malagasy (Austronesian) and discusses the broader theoretical issues that arise from these patterns. It explores new and original fieldwork data drawn from the largely unexplored domain of Malagasy deverbal nominals. Offering new insights to long-standing puzzles in the derivation of argument-structure, referential, and clausal nominals, the book promotes a single structure-building mechanism, which allows nominalizers to attach at different heights in the clausal spine to derive nominals with different morphosyntactic properties. In addition, it provides a novel analysis of participant nominalizations, showing that they are derived through the same mechanism that derives relative clauses, and thus setting the stage for new and exciting research directions.