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LINGUIST List 23.5324

Tue Dec 18 2012

Books: Possession and Ownership: Aikhenvald, Dixon (Eds)

Editor for this issue: Rebekah McClure <rebekahlinguistlist.org>

Date: 12-Dec-2012
From: Helen Boyd <helen.boydoup.com>
Subject: Possession and Ownership: Aikhenvald, Dixon (Eds)
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Title: Possession and Ownership
Publication Year: 2012
Publisher: Oxford University Press

Book URL: http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/product/9780199660223.do

Editor: Alexandra Y Aikhenvald
Editor: R. M. W. Dixon

Hardback: ISBN: 9780199660223 Pages: 352 Price: U.K. £ 65.00


Possession and Ownership brings together linguists and anthropologists in a
series of cross-linguistic explorations of expressions used to denote
possession and ownership, concepts central to most if not all the varied
cultures and ideologies of humankind. Possessive noun phrases can be broadly
divided into three categories - ownership of property, whole-part relations
(such as body and plant parts), and blood and affinal kinship relations. As
Professor Aikhenvald shows in her extensive opening essay, the same possessive
noun or pronoun phrase is used in English and in many other Indo-European
languages to express possession of all three kinds - as in "Ann and her
husband Henry live in the castle Henry's father built with his own hands" -
but that this is by no means the case in all languages. In some, for example,
the grammar expresses the inalienability of consanguineal kinship and
sometimes also of sacred or treasured objects. Furthermore the degree to which
possession and ownership are conceived as the same (when possession is 100% of
the law) differs from one society to another, and this may be reflected in
their linguistic expression. Like others in the series this pioneering book
will be welcomed equally by linguists and anthropologists.

Linguistic Field(s): Semantics

Written In: English (eng)

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