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CommandsA Cross-Linguistic Typology$
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Alexandra Y. Aikhenvald and R. M. W. Dixon

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198803225

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198803225.001.0001

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On the heterogeneity of Northern Paiute directives

On the heterogeneity of Northern Paiute directives

Chapter:
(p.146) 7 On the heterogeneity of Northern Paiute directives
Source:
Commands
Author(s):

Tim Thornes

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198803225.003.0007

The formal encoding of directive speech in Northern Paiute (W. Numic, Uto-Aztecan) is quite heterogeneous, despite the simplicity of bare verb stem, addressee-directed command forms. The language employs a range of grammatical constructions both to colour the force of a canonical imperative and to form non-canonical imperatives. This chapter addresses formal strategies that express directive speech in Northern Paiute with attention to pragmatic context in naturally occurring speech, in addition to preliminary comparisons with related languages and hypotheses around historical developments in Numic and beyond, placing the data in the context of a general typology of commands in the world’s languages. The use of aspect marking, deontic modality, and subordinating morphology is common. The ways in which aspectual morphology is deployed in Northern Paiute directives do not always follow patterns found in other languages. Of further interest is the evidence for a biclausal origin in the grammar of directive speech acts.

Keywords:   imperative, prohibitive, hortative, punctual, irrealis, modality, subordination, nominalization, biclausality, diachrony

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