The elusive verbal classifiers in ‘Witoto’

Wojtylak, Katarzyna I. (2019) The elusive verbal classifiers in ‘Witoto’. In: Aikhenvald, Alexandra Y., and Mihas, Elena I., (eds.) Genders and Classifiers: A Cross-Linguistic Typography. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK, pp. 176-196.

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Abstract

This chapter focuses on forms and functions of verbal classifiers in Murui and Mɨka, two closely related language varieties of the ‘Witoto’ dialect continuum from the Witotoan language family spoken in Northwest Amazonia. Murui and Mɨka verbal classifiers are used to refer to a previously mentioned referent or to re-introduce the referent into the discourse. They form a closed set of morphemes that signal the presence of S/O/peripheral arguments. ‘Witoto’ verbal classifiers interact with semantic types of verbs (they co-occur with verbs of ‘handling’ and ‘affect’), and categorize noun referents in terms of their physical properties (shape, size, structure, etc.). Further comparison of Murui and Mɨka verbal classifiers suggests that the productivity of this system has been gradually eroding in Murui as spoken today; this is unlike verbal classifiers found in older Mɨka narratives.

Item ID: 60952
Item Type: Book Chapter (Research - B1)
ISBN: 978-0-19-884201-9
Keywords: verbal classifier, Witotoan language, argument, semantic type of verb, productivity
Copyright Information: © Katarzyna I. Wojtylak 2019. First published in 2019 by Oxford University Press.
Date Deposited: 14 Nov 2019 06:00
FoR Codes: 20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2004 Linguistics > 200408 Linguistic Structures (incl Grammar, Phonology, Lexicon, Semantics) @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9502 Communication > 950202 Languages and Literacy @ 100%
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