Spatial forms and functions in isiNdebele: A 3D-stimulus field study

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Sammanfattning

In this article, we give an overview of the spoken practices of spatial grammar in the South African Bantu language isiNdebele. Based on field data obtained through elicitation using three-dimensional stimuli, we demonstrate how
verbal and adnominal spatial marking are used in isiNdebele to encode basic, semantically determined spatial functions, both static and dynamic. We show that spoken isiNdebele features strategies of both typological types of satellite-framed and verb-framed languages, with the clear division of reserving prepositional marking to encode types of positions (localisations), and verbal semantics to encode boundaries in the trajectories of movement (local roles). We also note that inherent verb semantics and complex syntactic clause-linking strategies compensate for the lack of semantic information expressed by the primary Locative case marker e-…-ini in the expression of motion events, making isiNdebele typologically a representative of so-called role-indifferent languages. Finally, the data gives new evidence on how the secondary Locative case nga- expresses the function of non-contact, but the notable variation in the use of the prefix leaves room for further study about its degree of grammaticalisation. In broader terms, our study seeks to fulfil three goals: describing a significant semantic and grammatical domain of the heretofore understudied language isiNdebele; bringing the resulting typological case study into dialogue with wider typological and variationist discussions related to spatiality; and highlighting the significance of developing innovative and practical methodologies for the empirical study of spatial conceptualisation and expression.
Originalspråkengelska
Titel på gästpublikationLinguistic Diversity Research among Speakers of isiNdebele and Sindebele in South Africa
RedaktörerLotta Aunio, Axel Fleisch
Antal sidor38
UtgivningsortHelsinki
FörlagFinnish Oriental Society
Utgivningsdatum2019
Sidor91-128
ISBN (tryckt)978-951-9380-95-7
StatusPublicerad - 2019
MoE-publikationstypA3 Del av bok eller annan forskningsbok

Publikationsserier

NamnStudia Orientalia
FörlagFinnish Oriental Society
Nummer120
ISSN (tryckt)0039-3282

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  • 6121 Språkvetenskaper

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