Ubiquitous Association in u̱t‑Maꞌin


u̱t‑Maꞌin is a Kainji, East Benue-Congo language, spoken in northwestern Nigeria (ISO 639-3 code [gel]). The u̱t‑Maꞌin associative morpheme is in widespread use across different syntactic constructions. The associative can create a modifying phrase from a descriptive noun with a wide range of semantic relationships between the two nouns. The associative also serves as the relative pronoun introducing a descriptive relative clause. The associative can mark a goal or an object that is contained within the nominalized verb phrase. When a nominalized verb phrase is the complement to an auxiliary construction, the associative (only sometimes) marks the object complement of the verb. Finally, the associative marks the nominative form of nouns in certain morphosyntactic environments; this results in a so-called marked-nominative word form and clause alignment pattern. These diverse uses of the associative and the accompanying agreement marking are pervasive in u̱t‑Maꞌin and understanding these uses crucial to understanding the grammar of the language.

28 Jul, 2020
Summer Colloquia Series, Canada Institute of Linguistics
Langley, British Columbia, Canada

Note: Originally scheduled for in person presentations and discussion but the event was held online due to Covid-19.

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Rebecca Paterson
Rebecca Paterson
Postdoctoral Researcher

My research interests include field linguistics, grammatical description, and translation.