Enlarged arguments in Bantu: evidence from Chichewa

Simango, S.R. (2007) Enlarged arguments in Bantu: evidence from Chichewa. Lingua, 117 (6). pp. 928-949. ISSN 0024-3841



Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.lingua.2006.05.003


This paper re-examines two types of constructions that have featured in the discussion of possessor ascension in Bantu: one type – an applicative construction – is associated with alienable possession, and the other – non-applicative – is associated with inalienable possession. The study shows that the former expresses affectedness, and that the possessor reading arises only by construal; whereas the latter expresses a part–whole relationship. The paper argues that the two constructions differ in more significant ways than has previously been acknowledged; and that their distinct derivations cannot be captured by traditional possessor ascension (PA) analyses. The putative “alienable” possessor constructions belong to the class of (benefactive) applicative constructions and should be analyzed as such. The paper proposes that the so-called “inalienable” possessor constructions can best be accounted for by positing the existence of “enlarged arguments” wherein the possessum functions as a nominal predicate which more narrowly pinpoints the locus of the action described by the verb.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Enlarged arguments; Part–whole construction; Possessor ascension; Bantu applicatives; Multiple predication
Subjects:Y Unknown > Subjects to be assigned
Divisions:Faculty > Faculty of Humanities > English Language and Linguistics
ID Code:777
Deposited By: Mrs Eileen Shepherd
Deposited On:15 Aug 2007
Last Modified:06 Jan 2012 16:19
312 full-text download(s) since 15 Aug 2007
61 full-text download(s) in the past 12 months
More statistics...

Repository Staff Only: item control page