[Lingtyp] workshop 49th SLE: The crosslinguistic diversity of antipassives: function, meaning and structure

Tasaku Tsunoda tsunoda at ninjal.ac.jp
Tue Oct 20 23:51:28 UTC 2015


Dear Colleagues,

    I wish to draw your attention to the following book of mine:

Tsunoda, Tasaku. 2011. A grammar of Warrongo. Berlin & New York: De Gruyter
Mouton.

Pp. 427-506 of this book provide a detailed account (morphology, syntax,
semantics and pragmatics) of the antipassive construction and syntactic
ergativity of Warrongo.
    This description supersedes the description given in Tsunoda (1988),
which is listed in References below.

    Unfortunately I will not be able to attend the workshop, but I wish you
every success.

Best wishes,

-- 
Tasaku Tsunoda


From:  Katarzyna Janic <Katarzyna.Janic at univ-lyon2.fr>
Reply-To:  Katarzyna Janic <Katarzyna.Janic at univ-lyon2.fr>
Date:  2015年10月16日金曜日 20:20
To:  <LINGTYP at LISTSERV.LINGUISTLIST.ORG>
Cc:  Alena Witzlack <witzlack at googlemail.com>
Subject:  [Lingtyp] workshop 49th SLE: The crosslinguistic diversity of
antipassives: function, meaning and structure


49th Annual Meeting of the Societas Linguistica Europaea, 31st August - 3rd
September 2016

Title: The crosslinguistic diversity of antipassives: function, meaning and
structure 

Convenors
Katarzyna Janic (Laboratory Dynamique du Langage: Université Lyon 2 / CNRS)
Alena Witzlack-Makarevich (University of Kiel)

Workshop aims
This workshop aims at bringing together linguists working within different
theoretical frameworks in order to update our understanding of the
cross-linguistic diversity of the antipassive and antipassive-like
constructions across the world’s languages. This includes such aspects as
morphosyntactic properties of the arguments of the antipassive construction,
the antipassive verbal markers, morphosyntactic factors determining the
structural realization of antipassives, as well as the functions these
constructions perform crosslinguistically.

Workshop background
The term antipassive refers to a derived detransitivized construction
illustrated in (1):

(1) West Greenlandic (Eskimo, Eskimo-Aleut; Keenan & Dryer 2007: 359)
        a.  arna-p                               niqi-∅
niri-vaa
                 woman-ERG            meat-ABS            eat-IND.3SG.3SG
                ‘The woman ate the meat.’
        b. arnaq-∅                         niqi-mik
niri-NNig-puq
                woman-ABS           meat-INS            eat-ANTIP-IND.3SG
              ‘The woman ate meat.’

On the syntactic level, the antipassive (1b) is derived from the
corresponding transitive predication (1a) by means of the antipassive suffix
-NNig attached to the verbal root niri ‘eat’. The semantic patient (niqi-∅
‘meat-ABS’) loses its properties of a core argument. The peripheral status
of this argument is indicated by the instrumental case -mik (niqi-mik
‘meat-INS’) and the lack of indexing on the verb in (1b). Additionally, the
antipassive operation modifies the coding properties of the agent: it is no
longer marked with the ergative case, as in (1a) and in the unmarked
absolutive case instead. Semantically, the antipassive is often regarded as
being synonymous with the transitive predication (Foley 2007). The semantic
affinity between transitive and antipassive constructions is conventionally
reflected by identical or similar translations, as in (1a) vs. (1b).

The antipassive construction is often characterized by the following
properties (cf. Polinsky 2005):
a) the patient-like argument (or P) of the corresponding transitive
predicate has lost some or all of its morphosyntactic properties of a core
argument
b) the agent-like argument (or A) acquired some morphosyntactic properties
usually associated with S (or sole argument)
c) the reassignment of semantic argument roles to syntactic functions is
usually indicated on the verb (e.g. by an affix)

The term antipassive was originally introduced by Silverstein (1972) to
emphasize the structural similarity of this construction to the passive.
Consequently, the antipassive is often regarded as a mirror image of the
passive in a sense that in the passive the demoted (or omitted) argument is
the agent-like argument, whereas in the antipassive it is the patient-like
argument that loses its properties of a core argument.

Up to now, the literature on detransitivizing operations primarily focused
on the more familiar passive construction: while numerous studies have been
published on the passive (Siewierska 1984; Shibatani 1988; Taranto 2004;
Abraham & Leisiö 2006; Lyngfelt & Solstad 2006; Alexiadou & Schäfer 2013),
not a single book-length on the antipassive has appeared. Given how much
progress has been made recently in the study of linguistic diversity and the
increasing accessibility of modern descriptive grammars, it is time to
systematically update our understanding of the antipassive constructions,
its morphosyntactic properties, distributional patterns across the world’s
languages and functional motivation. Below some aspects relevant to the
proposed workshop will be briefly introduced.

Typological studies on antipassives started with Silverstein’s (1976) work,
positing the existence of an implicational relation between language
particular morphosyntactic alignment and individual detransitivizing
operations. The passive is regarded as a characteristic of languages with
primarily nominative-accusative case alignment. By contrast, the antipassive
is considered to be a hallmark of languages with traits of ergative
alignment. Even though there is nothing in Silverstein’s (1972) study that
would exclude the possibility of the existence of the antipassive in
well-behaved accusative languages, it has become textbook wisdom that this
phenomenon is primarily associated with languages with ergative traits (e.g.
Payne 1997: 219). Still, there is more and more agreement among the
linguists that antipassive can be recognized in primarily accusative
languages e.g. (2). Unlike in the transitive construction (2a), in the
antipassive (2b), the verb carries a verbal marker se due to the present of
which the patient (nouveau chapitre ‘new chapter’) is demoted to an oblique
position. Its peripheral status is marked syntactically by the preposition
à. Since French is a well-behaved accusative language, there is no
difference in the coding of the agent (doctorant ‘PhD student’).

(2)     French (Janic 2013b: 185)
        a.    Le     doctorant                     attaque
un         nouveau          chapitre.
                  the     PhD.student          start.3SG.PRS         a
new                     chapter
                 ‘The PhD student starts a new chapter.’

    b.     Le     doctorant                    s’           attaque
à                         un         nouveau     chapitre.
                the     PhD.student          SE         start.3SG.PRS
PREP         a             new                       chapter
               ‘The PhD student starts a new chapter.’

One of the goals of this workshop is thus to collected further evidence for
the existence of the antipassive construction in primarily accusative
languages.

Previous research distinguishes two main functions of antipassive. The
semantic /pragmatic one serves to indicate that the action expressed by the
verb shows lower semantic transitivity. This can be related to the
properties of object (e.g. identity or affectedness), in addition to
properties of a predicate (e.g. aspects) (cf. Hopper and Thompson 1980;
Bittner 1987; Cooreman 1994; Polinsky 2005). The syntactic function consists
in the promotion of the agent in order to act as pivot for various syntactic
operations. Unlike the semantic/pragmatic function, the latter has only been
identified in languages with syntactic ergativity where antipassive is used
to overcome syntactic restrictions imposed on various operations such as
coordination, interrogation, negation etc. Additionally, in some languages
the antipassive may also express lexical functions (cf. Grinevald-Craig
1979; England 1988; Tsunoda 1988).

Another line of research focused on the morphological realization of the
antipassive. Polinsky (2005) focuses on the question of whether or not a
language has a specialized antipassive verbal marker, i.e. a morpheme whose
function is limited to the antipassive alone. The question of dedicated
antipassive marker in languages with nominative-accusative marking pattern
has been recently discussed by Creissels (2012); Janic (2013a, Janic 2013b)
and Bostoen et al. (2015). Since a dedicated antipassive marker may be
diachronically associated with other functional domains (e.g. aspect,
middle/reflexivity, reciprocity, causativity), there is also a great deal of
variation in the polyfunctionality and patterns of polysemy displayed by
antipassive markers across the world’s languages that have not been
discussed yet in detail.

A number of gaps in the research on the antipassive can be identified: the
acknowledge that the antipassive is a topic worthy of study beyond the scope
of ergativity; scarcity of detailed studies of antipassive verbal marker
(e.g. presence vs. absence of a verbal marker, distinction between
specialized vs. polyfunctional antipassive marker, the diachronic
development of the antipassive markers); the limitation of the study of
antipassives to the formal features, without providing systematic semantic
description of this construction, this made many linguists fail to
acknowledge the existence of the implicational relationship between
semantics of a construction and its syntactic realization and how they
interact and function in discourse. Finally, the fact that in some languages
the antipassive may be lexically restricted or present subtle lexical
difference in meaning between transitive and antipassive verbs has largely
been ignored in the discussion of the antipassive phenomenon.

The proposed workshop is intended to bring together scholars interested in
various aspects of the antipassive construction in individual languages and
typological variation of antipassive constructions. Possible topics of the
workshop will include, but are not limited to, the following:

• the morphosyntactic properties of the arguments of the antipassive
construction, i.e. the properties acquired by the A argument and the
properties lost by the P arguments, e.g. Kiranti languages (Bickel et al.
2007);
• restrictions and on the use of antipassives, such as the obligatory use of
antipassive with non-referential patient observed in some Mayan languages
(Grinevald-Craig 1979; England 1988);
• lexical and grammatical restrictions on antipassive formations;
• antipassive constructions in primarily non-ergative languages;
• functional motivation for the use of antipassive constructions;
• markedness of antipassive constructions;
• nature and sources of antipassive verbal markers;
• diachronic development of the antipassive construction.

We invite you to submit an abstract of up to 500 words related to the topics
outlined above.
Please send your proposal as a PDF-file to the following address:

Katarzyna.Janic at univ-lyon2.fr

The deadline for the submission of the abstract is November 15, 2015.

Abstracts will be evaluated by the convenors, and selected abstracts will
accompany the workshop proposal. We will notify you of inclusion in the
workshop proposal when we submit it on November 25. Note that if the
workshop has been accepted, you will also have to submit a full abstract and
submit it to be reviewed by the SLE scientific committee. The deadline for
the submission of full abstracts is January 15, 2016. For further
information, please refer to the SLE meeting webpage at
http://sle2016.eu/call-for-papers.

 
References
Abraham, W., Leisiö. L. 2006. Passivization and typology: form and function.
Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Alexiadou, A., Schäfer. F. 2013. Non-canonical passives. Amsterdam: John
Benjamins.
Bickel, B., M. Gaenszle, A. Rai, P. D. Rai, Sh. K. Rai, V. S. Rai, and N. P.
Sharma (Gautam). 2007. Two ways of suspending object agreement in Puma:
between incorporation, antipassivization, and optional agreement. Himalayan
Linguistics 7, 1-18.
Bittner, M. 1987. On the semantics of the Greenlandic antipassive and
related constructions. International Journal of American Linguistics, 53
(2), 194–231.
Bostoen, K., Dom, S., Segerer, G. 2015. Antipassive in Bantu. Linguistics,
53 (4), 731–772.
Cooreman, A. 1994. A functional typology of antipassives. In Fox, B. and
Hopper, P. J. (eds.), Voice: form and function. Amsterdam: John Benjamins,
49–88.
Creissels, D. 2012. The origin of antipassive markers in West Mande
languages. 45th Annual Meeting of the Societas Linguistica Europaea. 29
August–1 September, 2012, Stockholm, Sweden.
England, N. C. 1988. Mam voice. In Shibatani M. (ed.), Passive and voice.
Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 525–545.
Foley, W. 2007. A typology of information packaging in the clause. In
Schopen, T. (ed.), Language typology and syntactic description. Vol. I:
Clause structure. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 362–446.
Grinevald-Craig, C. 1979. The antipassive and Jacaltec. In Martin, L. (ed.),
Papers in Mayan Linguistic, Vol. 2. Columbia, MO: Lucas Brothers Publishers,
139–164.
Hopper, P. J., Thompson S. A. 1980. Transitivity in grammar and discourse.
Language, 56 (2), 251–299.
Janic, K. 2013a. The Slavonic languages and the development of the
antipassive marker. In Kor-Chahine, I. (ed.), Current studies in Slavic
linguistics. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 61–74.
Janic, K. 2013b. L’antipassif dans les langues accusatives. PhD Thesis.
Université Lyon 2.
Keenan, E. L., Dryer, M. S. 2007. Passive in the world’s languages. In
Schopen T. (ed.), Language typology and syntactic description. Vol. I:
Clause structure. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 325–361.
Lyngfelt, B., Solstad. T. 2006. Demoting the agent: passive, middle and
other voice phenomena. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Payne, T. E. 1997. Describing morphosyntax: a guide for field linguists.
Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Polinsky, M. 2005. Antipassive constructions. In Haspelmath, M, M. S. Dryer,
D. Gil, and B. Comrie. (eds.), The world atlas of language structures.
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 438–439.
Shibatani, M. 1988. Passive and voice. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Siewierska, A. 1984. The passive: a comparative linguistic analysis. London:
Croom Helm.
Silverstein, M. 1972. Chinook Jargon: language contact and the problem of
multilevel generative systems, part I. Language 48 (2), 378–406.
Silverstein, M. 1976. Hierarchy of Features and Ergativity. In Dixon, R. M.
W. (ed.), Grammatical categories in Australian languages. Canberra:
Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies, 112–171.
Taranto, G. C. 2004. An event structure analysis of causative and passive
get. Manuscript. University of California, San Diego.
Tsunoda, T. 1988. Antipassive in Warrungu and other Australian languages. In
Shibatani M. (ed.), Passive and voice. Amsterdam: John Benjamins, 597–650.

------------------------------------------------------------------
Katarzyna JANIC
Docteur en Sciences du Langage
Bureau 224S
Tel : 04 72 72 64 65

Laboratoire Dynamique Du Langage (UMR 5596)
Institut des Sciences de l'Homme
14 avenue Berthelot
69 363 Lyon

http://www.ddl.ish-lyon.cnrs.fr/annuaires/janic

https://independent.academia.edu/KJanic


------------------------------------------------------------------
Katarzyna JANIC
Docteur en Sciences du Langage
Bureau 224S
Tel : 04 72 72 64 65

Laboratoire Dynamique Du Langage (UMR 5596)
Institut des Sciences de l'Homme
14 avenue Berthelot
69 363 Lyon

http://www.ddl.ish-lyon.cnrs.fr/annuaires/janic

https://independent.academia.edu/KJanic

------------------------------------------------------------------
Katarzyna JANIC
Docteur en Sciences du Langage
Bureau 224S
Tel : 04 72 72 64 65

Laboratoire Dynamique Du Langage (UMR 5596)
Institut des Sciences de l'Homme
14 avenue Berthelot
69 363 Lyon

http://www.ddl.ish-lyon.cnrs.fr/annuaires/janic

https://independent.academia.edu/KJanic
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