[ skip to content ]

Structure and interpretation in Swahili existential constructions

Marten, Lutz (2013) 'Structure and interpretation in Swahili existential constructions.' Italian Journal of Linguistics, 25 (1). pp. 45-73.

Full text not available from this repository.

Abstract

Swahili has two existential constructions, one formed with a possessive copula and a locative subject marker (locative-possessive constructions), the other formed with a locative copula and a non-locative subject marker agree- ing with the theme argument (locative-copula constructions). Both constructions can be used to express existence in a place or more abstract existence. However, the constructions differ with respect to structure and interpretation: the locative-possessive construction has a more rigid word-order and a narrower range of interpretations than the locative-copula construction. On the other hand, the two constructions share the possibility to take ‘clausal’ complements, where a post-copular NP functions at the same time as the subject of a following clause. The paper illustrates the similarities and differences between the constructions and shows how these are related to information structure and to lexical and morphosyntactic constraints imposed by the two copula forms.

Item Type: Articles
SOAS Departments & Centres: Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Department of the Languages and Cultures of Africa
Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Department of Linguistics
Depositing User: Lutz Marten
Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2014 10:12
URI: http://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/17927

Statistics

Item downloaded times since 20 Jan 2014 10:12.

View statistics for "Structure and interpretation in Swahili existential constructions"

Repository staff only

View Item View Item