[Lingtyp] Truc, machin and friends

Jess Tauber tetrahedralpt at gmail.com
Thu Mar 9 14:11:10 UTC 2023

I wonder whether interrogative kvnna 'who?' and possessive interrogative
kainna 'whose?' might be related to the above...

Jess Tauber

On Thu, Mar 9, 2023 at 9:00 AM Jess Tauber <tetrahedralpt at gmail.com> wrote:

> In Yahgan, a recently extinct genetic isolate from Tierra del Fuego, the
> form a:ki (colon here marks tenseness of the vowel preceding it), which
> when grammaticalized is used as a kind of definite article, has the sense
> of 'he, she, it, something, someone, indefinitely used, as when we cannot
> recall to mind the name of the thing or person, as when we say Mr.....,
> what's his name?'. Etymologically possibly from (u:)koali 'one'.
> Note also the form kvmaka:ta (v schwa) (Used only when ignorant of the
> coming person, i.e. not knowing who he is) 'There is somebody coming'.
> Analysis: kv- normal coreference pronoun prefix on verb 3rd person
> (generic), ma- passive voice prefix, ka:ta 'come' (kvka:ta  'he comes, is
> coming'). kvmaka:ta also defined here as 'There is someone coming, somebody
> is coming'.  Note also probably etymologically related ga:ta 'near, nigh,
> close, touching, i.e. no distance off', and ha:ta 'near, nigh, in the
> neighborhood'.
> Source- Bridges, Thomas, Yamana-English Dictionary (published in 1933 with
> the editors renaming the language using the term 'yamana' (person, man).
> The term Yahgan itself (phonetically Ya:gan) was an artificially created
> name by the missionary Bridges from the name of the center of their
> territory, Yahga Strait (Ya:gasha:ga). Manuscript of the dictionary
> originally completed between 1877-79.
> On Thu, Mar 9, 2023 at 8:07 AM Jan Rijkhoff <linjr at cc.au.dk> wrote:
>> More cases of 'fillers and placeholders' are discussed in an article on
>> bystander deixis, when the form of an utterance is co-determined by the
>> presence of sanctioned or non-sanctioned bystanders who are within earshot
>> of the speaker. In one of the three main subtypes of bystander deixis, part
>> of the message is communicated in such a way that certain bystanders will
>> not be able to understand the full content of the utterance.
>> One way to hide (part of) one's message from others who are present at
>> the speech situation is word substitution. The simplest form of word
>> substitution is probably an "ad hoc" or "on-the-spot" substitution, as when
>> an entity is referred to as, for example, "you-know-who/what" ("Did you
>> know that you-know-who got a new job?").
>> More details can be found in (attached): Rijkhoff, Jan. 1998. Bystander
>> deixis. In Yaron Matras (ed.), The Romani element in non-standard speech
>> (Sondersprachenforschung 3), 51-67. Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz.
>> Best, Jan R
>> ________________________________________
>> From: Lingtyp <lingtyp-bounces at listserv.linguistlist.org> on behalf of
>> Riccardo Giomi <rgiomi at campus.ul.pt>
>> Sent: Thursday, March 9, 2023 1:58 PM
>> To: Raffaele Simone
>> Cc: LINGTYP at listserv.linguistlist.org
>> Subject: Re: [Lingtyp] Truc, machin and friends
>> Caro Raffaele,
>> I can cite two papers from Tohru Seraku, written from two different
>> theoretical perspectives, where the author also presents or refers to data
>> from a variety of languages, including Ryukyuan, Ilocano, Japanese and
>> Mandarin:
>> Searku, Tohru. 2020. Placeholders in Yoron Ryukyuan: A view from
>> Functional Discourse Grammar. Lingua 245.
>> Seraku, Tohru. 2023. Grammars for placeholders: The dynamic turn. Glossa:
>> a journal of general linguistics 8(1).
>> Examples from another handful of languages are found in
>> Hengeveld, Kees & Evelien Keizer. 2011. Non-straightforward
>> communication. Journal of Pragmatics 43, 1962–1976.
>> Hope this helps, best wishes,
>> Riccardo
>> Françoise Rose <francoise.rose at univ-lyon2.fr<mailto:
>> francoise.rose at univ-lyon2.fr>> escreveu no dia quinta, 9/03/2023 à(s)
>> 13:36:
>> I am very sorry, I meant dear Raffaele !
>> (this reminds me of all the times I am called Rose)
>> De : Lingtyp <lingtyp-bounces at listserv.linguistlist.org<mailto:
>> lingtyp-bounces at listserv.linguistlist.org>> De la part de Françoise Rose
>> Envoyé : jeudi 9 mars 2023 13:33
>> À : Raffaele Simone <raffaele.simone at uniroma3.it<mailto:
>> raffaele.simone at uniroma3.it>>; LINGTYP at listserv.linguistlist.org<mailto:
>> LINGTYP at listserv.linguistlist.org>
>> Objet : Re: [Lingtyp] Truc, machin and friends
>> Dear Simone,
>> As a follow up to the 2010 volume mentioned by Timur, Brigitte Pakendorf
>> and myself organized a workshop on fillers and placeholders at ALT this
>> winter. They were talks on a variety of languages (I am pasting below the
>> program). The type of word you are referring to is called nominal
>> placeholder in the literature. Their source can be a noun, but also a
>> demonstrative or interrogative pronoun,… I am joining the call for
>> abstracts, which includes some references.
>> Best,
>> Françoise
>> participant
>> title
>> Olga Kazakevich<https://iling-ran.ru/web/en/scholars/kazakevich>
>> Placeholders and other fillers in Northern Selkup
>> Elena Klyachko<https://gisly.net/>
>> Placeholders versus general extenders in Tungusic languages
>> Brigitte Pakendorf
>> Looking for the right word: a corpus-based investigation of placeholders
>> in Negidal
>> Albert Ventayol-Boada
>> Unravelling the distinct functions of l'ə (льэ) in Kolyma Yukaghir
>> Dolgor Guntsetseg
>> Placeholders in Khalkha-Mongolian
>> Maïa Ponsonnet
>> Placeholders in a polysynthetic language (Dalabon, Gunwinyguan,
>> non-Pama-Nyungan, Australia)
>> Yi-Yang Cheng
>> Prosodic (in)dependence and discourse functions: On the indeterminate
>> morphosyntactic analysis of clause linkers in Matu'uwal, an Austronesian
>> language of Taiwan
>> Marianne Mithun<http://mithun.faculty.linguistics.ucsb.edu/>
>> Placeholders on the Move
>> Françoise Rose<http://www.ddl.ish-lyon.cnrs.fr/Rose>
>> One more thing ‘thing’ can do in Tupi-Guarani languages : ‘thing’ as a
>> filler in Teko
>> Alexander Rice<https://sites.google.com/view/arice>
>> Mashti: A multipurpose filler in Northern Pastaza Kichwa
>> De : Lingtyp <lingtyp-bounces at listserv.linguistlist.org<mailto:
>> lingtyp-bounces at listserv.linguistlist.org>> De la part de Raffaele Simone
>> Envoyé : mercredi 8 mars 2023 19:08
>> À : LINGTYP at listserv.linguistlist.org<mailto:
>> LINGTYP at listserv.linguistlist.org>
>> Objet : [Lingtyp] Truc, machin and friends
>> Dear friends and colleagues,
>> I am preparing a paper on that group of general-generic words that are
>> used to designate entities whose name you do not know or do not remember,
>> or whose name you do not want to remember or that, simply, have no name in
>> a language.
>> I’m referring to “nouns” like French "truc" and "machin", Italian "coso",
>> "arnese", "aggeggio", or, for people, Italian "tizio", "tipo", Spanish
>> "tío", “fulano”, English "dude" etc. They form apparently a special word
>> class and implement a particular way of designating.
>> The situation in the European languages I am familiar with seems very
>> fragmented and discontinuous: some languages do have sets of dedicated or
>> semidedicated words for that function, but most don’t, as far as I see.
>> Does any of you have examples from other languages and, if any,
>> bibliographic references?
>> Thanks,
>> Raffaele
>> ==============
>> Emeritus Professor, Università Roma Tre
>> Hon C Lund University
>> Membre de l'Académie Royale de Belgique
>> Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres de France
>> Accademico (corrispondente) della Crusca
>> Prix de l'Institut de France-Fondation Bonnefous 2022
>> ===============
>> Attività e pubblicazioni // Activity and publications
>> http://uniroma3.academia.edu/RaffaeleSimone
>> _______________________________________________
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>> --
>> Riccardo Giomi, Ph.D.
>> University of Liège
>> Département de langues modernes : linguistique, littérature et traduction
>> Research group Linguistique contrastive et typologie des langues
>> F.R.S.-FNRS Postdoctoral fellow (CR - FC 43095)
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