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ERGATIVITY

  • ALANA JOHNS
  • DIANE MASSAM
  • JUVENAL NDAYIRAGIJE

Part of the Studies in Natural Language and Linguistic Theory book series (SNLT, volume 65)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Part-I The Cases

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 2-2
    2. PRANAV ANAND, ANDREW NEVINS
      Pages 3-25
    3. JONATHAN DAVID BOBALJIK, PHIL BRANIGAN
      Pages 47-77
    4. YUKO OTSUKA
      Pages 79-107
  3. Part ll-Splits

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 110-110
    2. JULIE ANNE LEGATE
      Pages 143-171
    3. MARTINA WILTSCHKO
      Pages 197-227
  4. Part lll-Antipassive

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 246-246
    2. JUVENAL NDAYIRAGIJE
      Pages 271-292
    3. ALANA JOHNS
      Pages 293-311
  5. Part IV -The Range of Ergativity

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 314-314
    2. ILEANA PAUL, LISA TRAVIS
      Pages 315-335
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 365-372

About this book

Introduction

This volume presents a collection of papers on the enticing and complex theme of Ergativity. The papers exemplify theoretical depth applied to a wide range of languages, with the majority of papers based on original fieldwork. Ergativity refers to a grammatical pattern in which the logical subject of intransitive clauses and the logical object of transitive clauses share some grammatical features, and in this respect differ from transitive subjects. The shared features are often case and/or agreement, but a variety of other relevant features have also been isolated in the literature. The ergative pattern contrasts with that found in accusative languages where the subject has the same grammatical marking in intransitive and transitive clauses, while the object has different marking. Ergativity provides us with an ideal testing ground for claims about the range and limits of language variation, and about the degree of elasticity in the morphology-syntax interface. However, because an understanding of ergativity rests on an understanding of other difficult grammatical issues such as grammatical relations, transitivity, aspect, person, case, and agreement, a clear and integrated analysis of the phenomenon has remained elusive. Since Dixon’s (1967/1972) pioneer study of Dyirbal, extensive research has been conducted on a variety of ergative languages over the world from both descriptive, typological, and theoretical perspectives (see inter alia Anderson 1976, Silverstein 1976, Comrie 1978, Dixon 1979, 1994, DeLancey 1981, Marantz 1984, Levin & Massam 1985, Johns 1992, Bittner and Hale 1996, to name a few).

Keywords

Index Morphological Nominativ Syntax Verb morphology progressive syntactic

Editors and affiliations

  • ALANA JOHNS
    • 1
  • DIANE MASSAM
    • 2
  • JUVENAL NDAYIRAGIJE
    • 3
  1. 1.University of TorontoCanada
  2. 2.University of TorontoCanada
  3. 3.University of TorontoCanada

Bibliographic information