Hindi and Gujarati discontinuous NPs

Tatiana Oranskaia tatiana.oranskaia at UNI-HAMBURG.DE
Thu Apr 24 18:04:01 UTC 2008


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Dear Bob,

what language is it? E.g. in the Hissar Parya language, which reveals 
some features both of the North-Western NIA and Rajasthani dialects, it is
normal to express given - including inalienable - possession through 
formal pronominal enclitics or postpositional possessive pronouns.

All the best
Tatiana Oranskaia
Bob Eaton schrieb:

> VYAKARAN: South Asian Languages and Linguistics Net Editors: Tej K. 
> Bhatia, Syracuse University, New York John Peterson, University of 
> Osnabrueck, Germany Details: Send email to listserv at listserv.syr.edu 
> and say: INFO VYAKARAN Subscribe:Send email to 
> listserv at listserv.syr.edu and say: SUBSCRIBE VYAKARAN FIRST_NAME 
> LAST_NAME (Substitute your real name for first_name last_name) 
> Archives: http://listserv.syr.edu I'm not a native speaker to judge 
> your sentences, but one issue that I've discovered on this topic is 
> that certain things are acceptable in speech that wouldn't otherwise 
> be acceptable in written materials.
>  
> I once got a sentence from a transcribed oral story (in a language 
> related to Hindi) that was effectively:
>  
> ... {small brother my} {water in} {drowning was}
>  
> That is, the possessive 'my' was after the head noun when it should 
> have been before. It wasn't possible to argue that it was an 
> afterthought or "clarification" because there were only two 
> participants in the story and there was no confusion as to who's 
> brother he was. The "my" wasn't even really necessary from a discourse 
> point of view.
>  
> This particular example may just have been aberrant, because both of 
> the referents (i.e. the 'brother' and 'my') were "known" entities, but 
> in other examples I have, the purpose for this out of position 
> genitive seems to be to give prominence to the (usually 
> non-established) head noun (in this case, 'brother'). So I guess this 
> might be the English equivalent of "my small BROTHER was drowning in 
> the water!"
>  
> However, again, I've tried using just this type of construction in 
> translated written stories in order to give prominence to a head noun, 
> but the language helpers consistently dis-prefer it. When I drew their 
> attention to this instance from a "natural story", they eventually 
> said... maybe he was speaking rather than writing the story (they 
> weren't aware that was originally an oral story).
>  
> Just a thought,
> Bob Eaton
>  
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> > VYAKARAN: South Asian Languages and Linguistics Net
> > Editors: Tej K. Bhatia, Syracuse University, New York
> > John Peterson, University of Osnabrueck, Germany
> > Details: Send email to listserv at listserv.syr.edu and say: INFO VYAKARAN
> > Subscribe:Send email to listserv at listserv.syr.edu and say:
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> >
> > Dear all,
> >
> > I'm preparing a paper on discontinuous NPs (DNP) in some Indian 
> languages.
> > I got two sets of data that I would be interested in judgements from
> > native speakers. It concerns discontinuous NPs in Hindi and Gujarati, I
> > got conflicting judgements from different people, but unfortunately 
> some
> > of them were not-quite-native speakers. Still, even between native
> > speakers there seems to be some variation. I just would like to know 
> how
> > widespread this variation is...
> >
> > Here's the set of Hindi sentences I need more judgements for. Keep 
> in mind
> > that the construction might be quite marked and that it probably 
> needs a
> > proper context for being acceptable. If so, just imagine any context 
> you
> > like... (Maybe the left peripheral noun should be read as a contrastive
> > topic, but it's really up to you.)
>
>  
>
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