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Standard negation in Sɛlɛɛ
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics, General Linguistics. University of Ghana.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7899-0513
(English)In: Afrika und Übersee, ISSN 0002-0427Article in journal (Refereed) In press
Abstract [en]

This paper discusses standard negation in Sɛlɛɛ. Sɛlɛɛ is a Ghana-Togo Mountain (GTM) Language of the Kwa group of the Niger Congo family. Standard negation is the negation of declarative verbal clauses. Different strategies are used in Sɛlɛɛ to negate declarative verbal main clauses depending on the tense and aspect category of the verb. The basic negation strategy used in standard negation is tonal alternation, with or without other negation markers. The other strategies are the use of portmanteau morphemes, affixes and vowel lengthening. Interestingly, in one and the same tense paradigm, different persons can select different negation strategies. There is syncretism among the 1st person singular forms of the negative recent past, the negative habitual and the negative perfect.

National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
Linguistics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-106965OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-106965DiVA: diva2:742017
Available from: 2014-08-29 Created: 2014-08-29 Last updated: 2017-12-05
In thesis
1. Aspects of the Grammar and Lexicon of Sεlεε
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Aspects of the Grammar and Lexicon of Sεlεε
2014 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

This thesis is a description of some aspects of the grammar of Sɛlɛɛ, a Ghana-Togo-Mountain (GTM) language, based on my own fieldwork. The thesis consists of an introduction and five papers.

Paper (I), Noun classes in Sεlεε, describes the noun class system of Sɛlɛɛ. It consists of eight noun class prefixes, four marking singular and four plural. They are paired in irregular ways to form eight genders (singular-plural pairs). Nouns agree with determiners, numerals and interrogative qualifiers within the noun phrase and can be indexed on the predicate. Nouns are allocated to classes/genders based partly on semantic notions.

Paper (II), Sεlεε (with Francesca Di Garbo), details the morphological encoding of diminution in Sɛlɛɛ either by the suffixes -bi, -bii, -mii, -e or -nyi alone or in combination with noun class shift. Augmentation is not expressed morphologically.

Paper (III), The tense and aspect system of Sεlεε: A preliminary analysis, shows that Sɛlɛɛ, unlike most Kwa languages, has a rather elaborate tense system encompassing present, hodiernal, pre-hodiernal and future tenses. The aspectual categories are progressive, habitual and perfect. Both categories often amalgamate with first person singular subject clitics.

Paper (IV), Standard negation in Sεlεε, deals with the negation of declarative verbal main clauses. This is primarily encoded by a high tone, sometimes combined with segmental morphemes, portmanteau negative tense-aspect morphemes and vowel lengthening. Each tense-aspect category has at least one particular negation strategy.

Paper (V), Unravelling temperature terms in Sεlεε (with Francesca Di Garbo), investigates the grammatical constructions employed for temperature evaluations. Personal feeling is only encoded via subjects, while ambient and tactile evaluations are construed attributively and predicatively.

A comparison of Selee and other GTM languages revealed similar noun morphologies but very different verbal morphologies.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Linguistics, Stockholm University, 2014. 261 p.
Keyword
Sεlεε, Santrokofi, GTM, grammatical description, noun class, negation, tense, aspect, diminutive, temperature evaluations
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Research subject
Linguistics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-106970 (URN)978-91-7447-956-0 (ISBN)
Public defence
2014-10-03, Nordenskiöldsalen, Geovetenskapens hus, Svante Arrhenius väg 12, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 2: Unpublished book chapter. Paper 3: Manuscript. Paper 4: In press. Paper 5: Unpublished book chapter.

Available from: 2014-09-11 Created: 2014-08-29 Last updated: 2014-09-15Bibliographically approved

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