Re(2): What ARE the clues for sequence in BH?

yochanan bitan ButhFam at compuserve.com
Wed Dec 15 16:25:11 EST 1999


(hutchesson)
>Does anyone know of a language that codes narrative discourse information
>into the verb rather than coding some aspect which incidentally is
>appropriate for the discourse? 
> I know of none. 

they are a dime a dozen in sub-saharan africa, at least within nilo-saharan
languages.
(add to that the vayyiqtol -- qatal of hebrew that does not seem to
distinguish tense or aspect but something more "pragmatic".)
i've heard of plenty of examples in other macro language families but i
will refrain from citing languages that i have not been in direct contact
with. 
even greek encodes discourse information when it chooses between using a
narrative participle versus a full finite verb. (the participles are
thematically demoted vis a vis the main finite verb. they put 'texture' in
the text.) in fact, a lot of discourse studies and verbs all got started
when weinrich started philosophizing about what really was going on in
french and german with their own aorist and imperfects. (you can add
longacre, 1968 and 1972, dealing with phillipine and new guinian
languages.)

yisge shlamax
randall buth



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