Foundation for Endangered Languages
10. Recent Publications
A Grammar of Mina
December 2005. 16 x 24 cm. XX, 512 pages. Cloth. Euro [D] 148.00 / sFr 237.00 / for USA, Canada, Mexico US$ 207.20. *
A Grammar of Mina is a reference grammar of a hitherto undescribed and endangered Central Chadic language. The book contains a description of the phonology, morphology, syntax, and all the functional domains encoded by this language. For each hypothesis regarding a form of linguistic expression and its function, ample evidence is given. The description of formal means and of the functions coded by these means is couched in terms accessible to all linguists regardless of their theoretical orientations.
The outstanding characteristics of Mina include: vowel harmony; use of phonological means, including vowel deletion and vowel retention, to code phrasal boundaries; two tense and aspectual systems, each system carrying a different pragmatic function; a lexical category ‘locative predicator’ hitherto not observed in other languages; some tense, aspect, and mood markers that occur before the verb, and others that occur after the verb; the markers of interrogative and negative modality that occur in clause-final position; the conjunction used for a conjoined noun phrase in the subject function that differs from the conjunction used for a conjoined noun phrase in all other functions.In addition to the coding of argument structure, adjuncts, tense, aspect, and mood categories, Mina also codes the category point-of-view. The language has a clausal category ‘comment clause’ used in both simple and complex sentences, which overtly marks the speaker’s comment on the proposition. The discourse structure has the principle of unity of place. If one of the participants in a described event changes scene, that is coded by a special syntactic construction in addition to any verb of movement that may be used. Because of these unusual linguistic characteristics, the Grammar of Mina will be of interest to a wide range of linguists.
A Grammar of Jahai
The many faces of Austronesian voice systems: some new empirical studies I Wayan Arka and Malcolm Ross, editors PL 571
The Ninth International Conference on Austronesian Linguistics and the Fifth International Conference on Oceanic Linguistics were both held at The Australian National University in Canberra during January 2002. Rather than publish a single very diverse collection of conference papers, the organisers favoured a series of smaller compilations on specific topics. One such volume, on Austronesian historical phonology, has already been published by Pacific Linguistics as Issues in Austronesian historical phonology by John Lynch.
The present volume represents another such compilation. It contains an introduction by the editors and ten papers on voice in Austronesian languages which provide both fresh data and some new perspectives on old problems. The papers touch on the many faces of Austronesian voice systems, ranging geographically from Teng on Puyuma in Taiwan to Otsuka on Tongan, typologically from voice in agglutinative languages in Taiwan and the Philippines to voice in isolating languages (Arka and Kosmas on Manggarai and Donohue on Palu’e), and in approach from Clayre’s areal/historical survey of Kelabitic languages in Borneo to single-language studies of voice like Davies on Madurese, Quick on Pendau, and the Andersens on Moronene. Katagiri and Kaufman each take a fresh look at an aspect of Tagalog voice.
2005 ISBN 0 85883 556 8 v + 278 pp
A Grammar of Gayo: a language of Aceh, Sumatra
Gayo is a regional language of Indonesia spoken by some 260,000 people in the central highlands of Aceh province, at the north-western tip of Sumatra. The Gayo people have historically had close ties to the majority Acehnese of the coast, while maintaining their distinct cultural and linguistic heritage. Gayo remains the first language of most ethnic Gayo to this day, and it is the vehicle for a rich oral literary tradition. The language belongs to the Malayo-Polynesian branch of the Austronesian family of languages. It is typologically unlike Acehnese, but shares certain features such as voice with the Batak languages of the neighbouring province of North Sumatra. Gayo features a voice system of the type that has been referred to as symmetrical, whereby neither actor nor undergoer voice can be considered the basic or unmarked alignment. The language also features valence-increasing affixes, and a range of verbal affixes that mark intransitive verbs to indicate information about various different semantic types of events. This grammar is the first detailed descriptive account of the phonology, morphology and syntax of Gayo. The analysis draws upon data that reflect the cultural context in which the language is spoken, and in the appendices two Gayo texts with their translations are included.
2005 ISBN 0 85883 553 3 2005 xii + 350 pp.
The Bookshop, Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, ANU Canberra ACT 0200 Australia
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UC Publications in Linguistics
Full-text downloadable PDF versions of the latest volumes in the University of California Publications in Linguistics series are available for no charge at the California Digital Library's "eScholarship" website:
UCPL 135: James A. Matisoff, "Handbook of Proto-Tibeto-Burman: System and Philosophy of Sino-Tibetan Reconstruction" (2003).
[This 800-page Volume is a clear and readable presentation of the current state of research on the history of the Tibeto-Burman (TB) language family, a typologically diverse group of over 250 languages spoken in Southern China, the Himalayas, NE India, and peninsular Southeast Asia. The TB languages are the only proven relatives of Chinese, with which they form the great Sino-Tibetan family.]
UCPL 136: Jane H. Hill, "A Grammar of Cupeño" (October 18, 2005).
[Hill's grammar reviews the phonology, morphology, syntax and discourse features of Cupeño, a Uto-Aztecan (Takic) language of California. Cupeño exhibits many unusual typological features, including split ergativity, that require linguists to revise our understanding of the development of the Uto-Aztecan family of languages in historical and areal perspective.]
UCPL 137: Alice Shepherd, "Proto-Wintun" (December 15, 2005).
[A reconstruction of Proto-Wintun, the parent language of a group of California Indian languages. It includes a grammatical sketch of Proto-Wintun, cognate sets with reconstructions and an index to the reconstructions. The book fills a need for in-depth reconstructions of proto-languages for California Indian language families, both for theoretical purposes and deeper comparison with other proto-languages.]
Saving Languages: An Introduction to Language Revitalization
Lenore A. Grenoble & Lindsay J. Whaley, Dartmouth College
Language endangerment has been the focus of much attention over the past few decades, and as a result, a wide range of people are now working To revitalize and maintain local languages. This book serves as a general reference guide to language revitalization, written not only for linguists and anthropologists, but also for language activists and community members who believe they should ensure the future use of their languages, despite their predicted loss. Drawing extensively on case studies, it sets out the necessary background and highlights central issues such as literacy, policy decisions, and allocation of resources. Its primary goal is to provide the tools for a successful language revitalization program.