Affeu Fangani 'Join Together': A Morphophonemic Analysis of Possessive Suffix Paradigms and a Discourse-Based Ethnography of the Elicitation Session in Pakin Lukunosh Mortlockese

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2015-05
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Odango, Emerson
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[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [May 2015]
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This dissertation provides a morphophonemic analysis of possessive suffix paradigms in the Pakin geolect of the Lukunosh dialect of Mortlockese, a minority language spoken in the Federated States of Micronesia. Within the framework of language documentation, I incorporate methodologies from the ethnography of communication and Interactional Sociolinguistics as tools to analyze metalinguistic discourse that emerges from my discussions with consultants about their perceptions of morpheme boundaries in the paradigms under investigation. Such L1 (first language)-speaker perceptions serve as external evidence to my core linguistic theorydriven analysis of the data, drawing upon principles of generative phonology. My analysis shows that variation in inflectional suffixes is best accounted for by a conjugation solution, rather than an economy solution. Lexical specification and processes of analogical extension play roles in the patterning of the suffix paradigms with particular lexical items. I find extensive idiolectal variation in these paradigms within even a relatively small geolectal population. I frame this work as an exploration of the ethnography of the elicitation session, whereby I investigate how linguistic “facts” about L1-speakers’ metalinguistic knowledge and performance are products of interactive intercultural communicative events. I discuss the interactional contexts from which the data emerge, providing a dimension of analysis that is not commonly found in descriptions of languages, such as in sketch grammars. By bringing together the fields of language documentation, sociolinguistics, and linguistic anthropology, I address the need for the development of inter- and intradisciplinary approaches to the analysis of language in fieldwork contexts. In developing this ethnography of the elicitation session, I draw attention to topics that are under-represented in the documentary linguistics literature, such as the agency of consultants in shaping the production of local metalinguistic knowledge in an elicitation session interview. I analyze realizations of certitude of emic metalinguistic analyses through the tool of epistemic stancetaking. The afféú fangani ‘join together’ element in this dissertation title refers to not only the morphological paradigms under investigation—in which lexical stems and possessive suffixes are joined together—but also the joining together of structural and functional approaches to language and culture within one work.
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Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2015.
Includes bibliographical references.
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Theses for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (University of Hawaii at Manoa). Linguistics
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