The Chukotkan “inverse” from an Itelmen perspective
Jonathan Bobaljik
September 2015

This paper presents a reanalysis of the Chukotkan prefix ne-, analyzed by Comrie (1980) as an inverse prefix. The distribution which Comrie took to constitute an inverse patterning (in which the object outranks the subject on a person hierarchy) is present in Itelmen as well, but only epiphenomenally, when both passive and active transitive paradigms are considered together. This observation suggests an alternative, diachronic source for the Chukotkan prefix’s distribution, resulting from heteroclisis—neutralization of an original active/passive distinction (maintained in Itelmen) to create a single, combined paradigm. This neutralization also provides a plausible historical source for the Chukotkan ergative construction, as argued by Fortescue (1997).
Format: [ pdf ]
Reference: lingbuzz/003755
(please use that when you cite this article)
Published in: Acta Linguistica Petropolitana
keywords: morphosyntax, agreement, inverse, heteroclisis, morphology
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