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LINGUIST List 18.3641

Wed Dec 05 2007

Diss: Syntax: Temsen: 'Embedded Clauses in Khasi'

Editor for this issue: Luiza Newlin Lukowicz <luizalinguistlist.org>

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        1.    Gracious Temsen, Embedded Clauses in Khasi

Message 1: Embedded Clauses in Khasi
Date: 05-Dec-2007
From: Gracious Temsen <gmtemsengmail.com>
Subject: Embedded Clauses in Khasi
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Institution: University of Delhi
Program: Department of Linguistics
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2007

Author: Gracious Mary Temsen

Dissertation Title: Embedded Clauses in Khasi

Linguistic Field(s): Syntax

Subject Language(s): Khasi (kha)

Dissertation Director:
Karumuri Venkata Subbarao

Dissertation Abstract:

All linguistic analyses of the Khasi language thus far have been of a
general nature ignoring many syntactically relevant issues, leave alone
that of embedded clauses. The aim of this thesis is to bridge this gap by
providing a good descriptive analysis of complement clauses, relative
clauses and adverbial clauses of Khasi. Our discussion mainly revolves
around the particle 'ba'. This particle is found in all the types of
clauses that we discuss here. It is a complementizer in that it acts as a
subordinator in complement clauses. It is an adjectival marker when it
occurs with adjectives, an adjectivalizer when it occurs with verbs and a
clause initiator or introducer in relative clauses. Our finding is that the
complementizer ba is not a 'quotative' but has a multi-purpose role to play
similar to that of the quotative in other South Asian languages. Khasi has
both finite and non-finite complement clauses, though it lacks the category
of the infinitive and consequently PRO. In this study we have shown that
relative clauses in Khasi are post-nominal external relative clauses and
the language does not have relative pronouns contrary to the claim of other
scholars. The so-called relative pronouns are nothing but resumptive
pronouns that are raised to the initial position of the embedded clause.
This work also seeks to explain why the word order in adverbial clauses in
Khasi is different from that of the main clause especially in cases where
the subject of the subordinate clause and the subject of the main clause
are understood to be different.

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