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Selected Topics in the Grammar of Nalca
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, General Linguistics.
2013 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The present study analyzes a selection of topics in the grammar of Nalca (Mek language; Papua), with a focus on verbs and nominals. No published grammar or dictionary is available for Nalca, but a translation of the New Testament was used as a parallel text. The results showed that Nalca is split-ergative, strongly suffixing and agglutinating, with subject-object-verb (SOV) as the dominant word order. Verbs consist of a stem and a series of suffixes expressing tense/aspect/mood, negation, number and person. The case alignment is ergative-absolutive for nouns, for which syntactic function is indicated by a series of postpositions. These postpositions agree with nouns in gender. Ergativity was not observed for pronouns; while the results were inconclusive, they appeared to show a nominative-accusative case alignment. The numeral system is an extended body-part system with the base 27. Many of the features found in Nalca are comparable with other Mek languages, with the gender system and split-ergativity being two major exceptions. Finally, the use of the New Testament as a parallel text was a success, with a basic description of the grammar of Nalca having been made, although further investigation is needed.

Abstract [sv]

Denna studie analyserar ett urval av områden i nalcas (mekspråk; Papua) grammatik, med fokus på verb och nominaler. Det finns ingen publicerad grammatik eller ordlista tillgänglig för nalca, men en översättning av Nya Testamentet användes som parallelltext. Resutltaten visade att nalca är split-ergativt, starkt suffigerande och agglutinerande, med subjekt-objekt-verb (SOV) som dominerande ordföljd. Verb består av en stam och en serie suffix som uttrycker tempus/aspekt/modus, negation, numerus och person. Argumentstrukturen är ergativ-absolutiv för substantiv, för vilka syntaktisk funktion indikeras av en serie postpositioner. Dessa postpositioner kongruerar med substantiven efter genus. Ergativitet observerades inte för pronomen; trots att resultaten inte var slutgiltiga, tycktes dessa istället uppvisa ett nominativ-ackusativt system. Det numeriska systemet är ett utökat kroppsdelssystem med basen 27. Många av karaktärsdragen i nalca hade motsvarigheter i de andra mekspråken, med genussystemet och split-ergativiteten som de största undantagen. Användandet av Nya Testamentet som parallelltext visade sig vara lyckat, eftersom en grundläggande beskrivning av nalcas grammatik åstadkoms, även om ytterligare forskning krävs.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. , 46 p.
Keyword [en]
grammar, Mek languages, Nalca, New Guinea, New Testament, Papuan languages, parallel text
Keyword [sv]
grammatik, Irian Jaya, mek, nalca, Nya Guinea, Nya Testamentet, papuanska språk, parallelltext
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-91132OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-91132DiVA: diva2:631006
Uppsok
Humanities, Theology
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2013-06-20 Created: 2013-06-19 Last updated: 2014-05-26Bibliographically approved

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Selected Topics in the Grammar of Nalca(735 kB)732 downloads
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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
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