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Morphology and Syntax of Gerunds in Truku Seediq: A Third Function of Austronesian "Voice" Morphology.

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Title:Morphology and Syntax of Gerunds in Truku Seediq: A Third Function of Austronesian "Voice" Morphology.
Authors:Oiwa-Bungard, Mayumi
Contributors:Linguistics (department)
Date Issued:Aug 2017
Publisher:University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Abstract:This dissertation is the first account of gerund constructions in Truku Seediq, an Austronesian
language spoken in Taiwan with a Philippine-type voice system. Gerunds are an in-between
syntactic category exhibiting both prototypically nominal characteristics and prototypically
sentential characteristics. They are event- or state-denoting and derived by a productive
nominalization process applied to verbal stems.
The aims of this dissertation are to provide a detailed morphosyntactic analysis of Truku
gerunds and to seek the historical origins of their morphology. Careful investigation unveils an
array of both prototypically nominal and prototypically sentential features associated with the
construction, confirming previous cross-linguistic characterization of gerunds. They also
manifest typologically unique patterns, such as an interaction with external possession and
limitations on voice alternation.
Gerunds in Truku are derived via highly polysemous morphemes. Markers for indicative
gerunds also function as voice markers and thematic nominalizers. An identical pattern of
reduplication not only creates subjunctive gerunds but also marks futurity and derives
means/manner nominalizations. Despite surface similarities, I demonstrate these functions to be
distinct from one another on semantic, distributional, and syntactic grounds.
I propose probable scenarios for the development of Truku gerund markers based on their
reconstructed functions in the proto language and cross-linguistic comparisons at the diachronic
level. Upon scrutiny, it becomes apparent that Seediq added new functions to two sets of
preexisting morphemes: voice markers/ thematic nominalizers (indicative gerund formation) and
a pattern of reduplication (subjunctive gerund formation). Both can be traced back to Proto-
Austronesian and are widely reflected in its daughter languages. Nevertheless, these innovations
are unique to Seediq. They are most likely independent innovations.
In spite of distinct origins, indicative and subjunctive gerund markers underwent comparable
lines of change that conspired to expand the verbal paradigm of the language. This change
involved loss of thematic orientation and a semantic shift towards denotation of events rather
than entities. Simultaneously, the original functions of the morphemes were left intact, yielding
an unusual level of morphological polysemy.
Description:Ph.D. Thesis. University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa 2017.
Rights:All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections: Ph.D. - Linguistics

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