The fourth volume in a series on the languages of Amazonia. This volume includes grammatical descriptions of Wai Wai, Warekena, a comparative survey of morphosyntactic features of the Tupi-Guarani languages, and a paper on interclausal reference phenomena in Amahuaca.
This volume explores typological variation within nonverbal predication in Amazonian languages. Using abundant data, generally from original and extensive fieldwork on under-described languages, it presents a far more detailed picture of nonverbal predication constructions than previously published grammatical descriptions. On the one hand, it addresses the fact that current typologies of nonverbal predication are less developed than those of verbal predication; on the other, it provides a wealth of new data and analyses of Amazonian languages, which are still poorly represented in existing typologies. Several contributions offer historical insights, either reconstructing the sources of innovative nonverbal predicate constructions, or describing diachronic pathways by which constructions used for nonverbal predication spread to other functions in the grammar. The introduction provides a modern typological overview, and also proposes a new diachronic typology to explain how distinct types of nonverbal predication arise.
This is the first guide and introduction to the extraordinary range of languages in Amazonia, which include some of the most the most fascinating in the world and many of which are now teetering on the edge of extinction. Alexandra Aikhenvald, one of the world's leading experts on the region, provides an account of the more than 300 languages. She sets out their main characteristics, compares their common and unique features, and describes the histories and cultures of the people who speak them. The languages abound in rare features. Most have been in contact with each other for many generations, giving rise to complex patterns of linguistic influence. The author draws on her own extensive field research to tease out and analyse the patterns of their genetic and structural diversity. She shows how these patterns reveal the interrelatedness of language and culture; different kinship systems, for example, have different linguistic correlates. Professor Aikhenvald explains the many unusual features of Amazonian languages, which include evidentials, tones, classifiers, and elaborate positional verbs. She ends the book with a glossary of terms, and a full guide for those readers interested in following up a particular language or linguistic phenomenon. The book is free of esoteric terminology, written in its author's characteristically clear style, and brought vividly to life with numerous accounts of her experience in the region. It may be used as a resource in courses in Latin American studies, Amazonian studies, linguistic typology, and general linguistics, and as reference for linguistic and anthropological research.
Although Daniel Everett was a missionary, far from converting the Pirahs, they converted him. He shows the slow, meticulous steps by which he gradually mastered their language and his gradual realisation that its unusual nature closely reflected its speakers' startlingly original perceptions of the world. Everett describes how he began to realise that his discoveries about the Pirah language opened up a new way of understanding how language works in our minds and in our lives, and that this way was utterly at odds with Noam Chomsky's universally accepted linguistic theories. The perils of passionate academic opposition were then swiftly conjoined to those of the Amazon in a debate whose outcome has yet to be won. Everett's views are most recently discussed in Tom Wolfe's bestselling The Kingdom of Speech. Adventure, personal enlightenment and the makings of a scientific revolution proceed together in this vivid, funny and moving book.
Lowland South American languages have been among the least studied ln the world. Consequently, their previous contribution to linguistic theory and language universals has been small. However, as this volume demonstrates, tremendous diversity and significance are found in the languages of this region. These nineteen essays, originally presented at a conference on Amazonian languages held at the University of Oregon, offer new information on the Tupian, Cariban, Jivaroan, Nambiquaran, Arawakan, Tucanoan, and Makuan languages and new analyses of previously recalcitrant Tupí-Guaraní verb agreement systems. The studies are descriptive, but typological and theoretical implications are consistently considered. Authors invariably indicate where previous claims must be adjusted based on the new information presented. This is true in the areas of nonlinear phonological theory, verb agreement systems and ergativity, grammatical relations and incorporation, and the uniqueness of Amazonian noun classification systems. The studies also contribute to the now extensive interest in grammatical change.
This book investigates the contact between Arawak and Tucanoan languages spoken in the Vaupï¿½s river basin in northwest Amazonia, which spans Colombia and Brazil. In this region language is seen as a badge of identity: language mixing is resisted for ideological reasons. The book considers which parts of the language categories are likely to be borrowed. This study also examines changes brought about by recent contact with European languages and culture, and the linguistic effects of language obsolescence.
Amazonian Spanish: Language contact and evolution explores the unique origins, linguistic features, and geo-political situation of the Spanish that has emerged in the Amazon. While this region boasts much linguistic diversity, many of the indigenous languages found within its limits are now being replaced by Spanish. This situation of language expansion, contact, and bilingualism is reshaping the sociolinguistic landscape of the Amazon by creating a number of Spanish varieties with innovative linguistic features that require closer scholarly attention. The current book documents this situation in detail. The chapters in this volume include work on distinct geographical regions of the Amazon, with primary data collected using different methodologies and language contact situations. The scholars in this volume specialize in an array of fields, including anthropological linguistics, bilingualism, language contact, dialectology, and language acquisition. Their work represents both formal and functional approaches to linguistics.
This is a comprehensive reference grammar of Tariana, an endangered Arawak language from a remote region in the northwest Amazonian jungle. Its speakers traditionally marry someone speaking a different language, and as a result most people are fluent in five or six languages. Because of this rampant multilingualism, Tariana combines a number of features inherited from the protolanguage with properties diffused from neighbouring but unrelated Tucanoan languages. Typologically unusual features of the language include: an array of classifiers independent of genders, complex serial verbs, case marking depending on the topicality of a noun, and double marking of case and of number. Tariana has obligatory evidentiality: every sentence contains a special element indicating whether the information was seen, heard, or inferred by the speaker, or whether the speaker acquired it from somebody else. This grammar will be a valuable source-book for linguists and others interested in natural languages.
This book sets out to answer a question that many linguists have been hesitant to ask: are some languages better than others? Can we say, for instance, that because German has three genders and French only two, German is a better language in this respect? Jarawara, spoken in the Amazonian jungle, has two ways of showing possession: one for a part (e.g. 'Father's foot') and the other for something which is owned and can be given away or sold (e.g. 'Father's knife'); is it thus a better language than English, which marks all possession in the same way? R. M. W. Dixon begins by outlining what he feels are the essential components of any language, such as the ability to pose questions, command actions, and provide statements. He then discusses desirable features including gender agreement, tenses, and articles, before concluding with his view of what the ideal language would look like - and an explanation of why it does not and probably never will exist. Written in the author's usual accessible and engaging style, and full of personal anecdotes and unusual linguistic phenomena, the book will be of interest to all general language enthusiasts as well as to a linguistics student audience, and particularly to anyone with an interest in linguistic typology.
This volume presents a typological/theoretical introduction plus eight papers about ergative alignment in 16 Amazonian languages. All are written by linguists with years of fieldwork and comparative experience in the region, all describe details of the synchronic systems, and several also provide diachronic insight into the evolution of these systems. The five papers in Part I focus on languages from four larger families with ergative patterns primarily in morphology. The typological contribution is in detailed consideration of unusual splits, changes in ergative patterns, and parallels between ergative main clauses and nominalizations. The three papers in Part II discuss genetically isolated languages. Two present dominant ergative patterns in both morphology and syntax, the other a syntactic inverse system that is predominantly ergative in discourse. In each, the authors demonstrate that identification of traditional grammatical relations is problematic. These data will figure in all future typological and theoretical debates about grammatical relations.
This book connects two linguistic phenomena, modality and subordinators, so that both are seen in a new light, each adding to the understanding of the other. It argues that general subordinators (or complementizers) denote propositional modality (otherwise expressed by moods such as the indicative-subjunctive and epistemic-evidential modal markers). The book explores the hypothesis both on a cross-linguistic and on a language-branch specific level (the Germanic languages). One obvious connection between the indicative-subjunctive distinction and subordinators is that the former is typically manifested in subordinate clauses. Furthermore, both the indicative-subjunctive and subordinators determine clause types. More importantly, however, it is shown, through data from various languages, that subordinators themselves often denote the indicative-subjunctive distinction. In the Germanic languages, there is variation in many clause types between both the indicative and the subjunctive and "that" and "if "depending on the speaker s and/or the subject s certainty of the truth of the proposition."
This volume focuses on word formation processes in smaller and so far underrepresented indigenous languages of South America. The data for the analyses have been mainly collected in the field by the authors. The several language families described here, among them Arawakan, Takanan, and Guaycuruan, as well as language isolates, such as Yurakaré and Cholón, reflect the linguistic diversity of South America. Equally diverse are the topics addressed, relating to word formation processes like reduplication, nominal and verbal compounding, clitic compounding, and incorporation. The traditional notions of the processes are discussed critically with respect to their implementation in minor indigenous languages. The book is therefore not only of interest to readers with an Amerindian background but also to typologists and historical linguists, and it is a supplement to more theory-driven approaches to language and linguistics.
In terms of its linguistic and cultural make-up, the continent of South America provides linguists and anthropologists with a complex puzzle of language diversity. The continent teems with small language families and isolates, and even languages spoken in adjacent areas can be typologically vastly different from each other. This volume intends to provide a taste of the linguistic diversity found in South America within the area of clause subordination. The potential variety in the strategies that languages can use to encode subordinate events is enormous, yet there are clearly dominant patterns to be discerned: switch reference marking, clause chaining, nominalization, and verb serialization. The book also contributes to the continuing debate on the nature of syntactic complexity, as evidenced in subordination.
Views of Nature and the Environment in Non-Western Cultures
Author: Helaine Selin
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
Nature Across Cultures: Views of Nature and the Environment in Non-Western Cultures consists of about 25 essays dealing with the environmental knowledge and beliefs of cultures outside of the United States and Europe. In addition to articles surveying Islamic, Chinese, Native American, Aboriginal Australian, Indian, Thai, and Andean views of nature and the environment, among others, the book includes essays on Environmentalism and Images of the Other, Traditional Ecological Knowledge, Worldviews and Ecology, Rethinking the Western/non-Western Divide, and Landscape, Nature, and Culture. The essays address the connections between nature and culture and relate the environmental practices to the cultures which produced them. Each essay contains an extensive bibliography. Because the geographic range is global, the book fills a gap in both environmental history and in cultural studies. It should find a place on the bookshelves of advanced undergraduate students, graduate students, and scholars, as well as in libraries serving those groups.
Amazonia has long been a focus of debate about the impact of the tropical rain forest environment on indigenous cultural development. This edited volume draws on the subdisciplines of anthropology to present an integrated perspective of Amazonian studies. The contributors address transformations of native societies as a result of their interaction with Western civilization from initial contact to the present day, demonstrating that the pre- and postcontact characteristics of these societies display differences that until now have been little recognized. CONTENTS Amazonian Anthropology: Strategy for a New Synthesis, Anna C. Roosevelt The Ancient Amerindian Polities of the Amazon, Orinoco and Atlantic Coast: A Preliminary Analysis of Their Passage from Antiquity to Extinction, Neil Lancelot Whitehead The Impact of Conquest on Contemporary Indigenous Peoples of the Guiana Shield: The System of Orinoco Regional Interdependence, Nelly Arvelo-Jiménez and Horacio Biord Social Organization and Political Power in the Amazon Floodplain: The Ethnohistorical Sources, Antonio Porro The Evidence for the Nature of the Process of Indigenous Deculturation and Destabilization in the Amazon Region in the Last 300 Years: Preliminary Data, Adélia Engrácia de Oliveira Health and Demography of Native Amazonians: Historical Perspective and Current Status, Warren M. Hern Diet and Nutritional Status of Amazonian Peoples, Darna L. Dufour Hunting and Fishing in Amazonia: Hold the Answers, What are the Questions?, Stephen Beckerman Homeostasis as a Cultural System: The Jivaro Case, Philippe Descola Farming, Feuding, and Female Status: The Achuara Case, Pita Kelekna Subsistence Strategy, Social Organization, and Warfare in Central Brazil in the Context of European Penetration, Nancy M. Flowers Environmental and Social Implications of Pre- and Post-Contact Situations on Brazilian Indians: The Kayapo and a New Amazonian Synthesis, Darrell Addison Posey Beyond Resistance: A Comparative Study of Utopian Renewal in Amazonia, Michael F. Brown The Eastern Bororo Seen from an Archaeological Perspective, Irmhilde Wüst Genetic Relatedness and Language Distributions in Amazonia, Harriet E. Manelis Klein Language, Culture, and Environment: Tup¡-Guaran¡ Plant Names Over Time, William Balée and Denny Moore Becoming Indian: The Politics of Tukanoan Ethnicity, Jean E. Jackson
This Handbook provides a comprehensive, state-of-the-art overview of theoretical and descriptive research in contemporary Hispanic sociolinguistics. Offers the first authoritative collection exploring research strands in the emerging and fast-moving field of Spanish sociolinguistics Highlights the contributions that Spanish Sociolinguistics has offered to general linguistic theory Brings together a team of the top researchers in the field to present the very latest perspectives and discussions of key issues Covers a wealth of topics including: variationist approaches, Spanish and its importance in the U.S., language planning, and other topics focused on the social aspects of Spanish Includes several varieties of Spanish, reflecting the rich diversity of dialects spoken in the Americas and Spain