Working Papers in Linguistics - 2012

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    Eastern Polynesian: The Linguistic Evidence Revisited
    (University of Hawai'i at Mānoa Department of Linguistics, 2012-12-01) Walworth, Mary
    For the past forty years, historical linguistics and archaeology have provided seemingly mutually corroboratory evidence for the settlement of east Polynesia. However, recent findings in archaeology have shifted this relationship out of balance, calling previous conclusions into question.1 This paper first reviews the generally accepted archaeological and linguistic theories of east Polynesia's settlement, then describes the new archaeological findings, highlighting the areas where the evidence from the two disciplines is discordant. In sections four and five, I analyze the linguistic data from Eastern Polynesian languages that show lack of support for the Tahitic and Marquesic subgroups, and propose a new, contact-based model for the region. The new linguistic model, in conjunction with archaeology, ultimately demonstrates that the settlement of east Polynesia and the development of Eastern Polynesian languages occurred in one major dispersal and subsequent spheres of contact, producing the pattern of cultural and linguistic traits we see today.
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    Multidisciplinary perspectives on the Austronesian homeland: A critique
    (University of Hawai'i at Mānoa Department of Linguistics, 2012-09-01) Lee, Nala Huiying
    Linguistics, archaeology, and genetics have been used to reconstruct the past. Where findings differ, there is a tendency to rely on a hierarchy of reliability in the sciences. With regard to the Austronesian homeland, it has been asserted that linguistics and archaeology rely on each other’s evidence for postulating an Out-of-Taiwan hypothesis. This paper examines the arguments that use individual lines of evidence. Whereas evidence from linguistics and archaeology support an Out-of-Taiwan hypothesis, genetics does not provide a coherent scenario for or against such a hypothesis. Issues of dating, sampling, and non-paternity should be addressed before genetics can be reliably used in conjunction with linguistics and archaeology.
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    The Wuvulu Velar Obstruent Puzzle Solved
    (University of Hawai'i at Mānoa Department of Linguistics, 2012-08-01) Hafford, James
    Exuberant free variation of the velar obstruents [.], [k], [x], and [.] has been a long-standing puzzle in Wuvulu phonology. Blust (2008) made progress toward a solution by recognizing the allophony of [.] and [x], and by eliminating [.] from the analysis. The present paper claims to complete the solution with two compelling arguments that are crucial to the problem: (1) neither [k] nor /k/ is associated with the velar allophones [x] and [.], and (2) oddly, /r/ is perhaps the best candidate for the phonemic form of the velars. This paper also evaluates Blust’s (2008) correlation of the stricture features of [x] and [.] with the height of adjacent vowels, and suggests that the correlation could be generalized to include /l/ and its allophones [l] and [d].
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    Acquisition of the Distributive Meaning of the Extrinsic Plural Marker in Korean
    (University of Hawai'i at Mānoa Department of Linguistics, 2012-01-01) Kim, Chae-Eun
    The Korean marker -tul is generally taken to be a plural marker, although some argue that it indicates distributivity as well. The present study investigates whether -tul carries a plural meaning, a distributive meaning, or both in child and adult Korean. The findings indicate that children who are acquiring Korean rarely accept the distributive meaning, even when appropriate contextual support for the distributive interpretation is readily available. By contrast, adults show straightforward evidence of knowing the distributive meaning of -tul. The experimental results show that while Korean adults treat -tul as a plural and distributive marker, children (under the age of 8) treat -tul exclusively as a plural marker.