Clause chaining, switch reference and coordination
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Linguistics and Philosophy.
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In this thesis I ponder over a constellation of phenomena that revolve around switch reference and coordination, drawing mainly on their instantiation in Kisedje (Je, Brazil). I start by investigating Klsedje's case system. In this language there is a case split along the finite/non-finite axis. I argue that nominative is assigned by INFL, whereas ergative is assigned to the subject of INFL-less clauses. Importantly, the particles I take to instantiated INFL in Kisedje don't have tense semantics, but rather modal semantics. Investigating other properties of this modal INFL in Klsedje, I can determine the fine structure of its clause. This knowledge allows me to argue that the construction that has been identified elsewhere as clause chaining is actually asymmetric clausal coordination. The special properties that seem to distinguish clause chaining from asymmetric clausal coordination are argued to fall out from the structure of the clause in Kisedje. I further propose that the same type of structure is found in the other languages where asymmetric coordination has been called clause chaining. Asymmetric clausal coordination in Kisedje features morphology which indicates whether adjacent conjuncts have the same or different subjects (switch-reference marking). Important evidence for understanding how switch-reference is computed will come from the study of a deletion phenomenon that happens in the neighborhood of switch-reference markers in Kisedje. Besides isolating evidence for a direct agreement relation between switch-reference marking conjunction and the subject of one of the conjuncts, this study makes a contribution to the theory of morphology. Knowing the structure of the clause in Kisedje and the featural composition of switch-reference markers allows me to support a specific theory of switch-reference computation. Given this theory, I argue that asymmetric coordination (the kind of coordination where switch-reference is marked) instances an X-structure, whereas symmetric coordination (which can't be marked for switchreference) instances a flat structure. Such structural difference also allows me to explain other differences between symmetric and asymmetric coordination. Thesis Supervisor:
Thesis: Ph. D., Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Department of Linguistics and Philosophy, 2014.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (pages 147-152).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Department of Linguistics and Philosophy.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Linguistics and Philosophy.