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"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more

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Title: Marquesan
Subtitle: A Grammar of Space
Written By: Gabriele H. Cablitz
URL: http://www.degruyter.de/rs/bookSingle.cfm?isbn=978-3-11-018949-0&fg=SK&L=E
Series Title: Trends in Linguistics. Studies and Monographs 169

This volume investigates the linguistic and semantic encodings and
conceptions of space in the East-Polynesian language Marquesan by focusing
on the great variety of language- and culture-specific ways of referring to
space, thus documenting an essential part of human behaviour and everyday
communication in a South Pacific island population. On the basis of a large
corpus of both natural and elicited spoken language data the
morphosyntactic and semantic properties of all relevant lexical and
grammatical units and constructions used for spatial reference are analysed
in detail.

Remarkable for this language is the fact that a particular kind of spatial
orientation system based on local land-marks of the environment - a
so-called 'absolute system' - is used for spatial description even on a
micro-level or so-called 'table-top' space. Marquesan - A Grammar of Space
is the first comprehensive description and in-depth study of spatial
language to be found in an Austronesian language. Apart from examining the
complex sociolin-guistic situation, the degree of language endangerment in
the bilingual speech community and the resulting rapid linguistic change in
spatial language use, the book also offers a detailed description of the
theoretical background of 'language and space' research and the linguistic
variability to be found across languages.

Moreover, the volume contains an extensive grammatical sketch of Marquesan
which complements the language description of the specific domain space in
a useful way providing the reader with general insights into one of the not
well documented Oceanic languages.

The volume addresses linguists, psycholinguists, anthro-pologists,
fieldworking linguists, and especially Oceanists and Austronesianists.
Moreover, it provides important insights for researchers from other
disciplines that are interested in the study of space.


Chapter 1 Motivations for a study of space
Chapter 2 Ethnographic and linguistic background and methodology
Chapter 3 Grammatical sketch
Chapter 4 Theoretical background of language and space research
Chapter 5 Semantic and morphosyntactic analysis of locative constructions
in North Marquesan
Chapter 6 Modifiers in locative constructions
Chapter 7 Usage of locative constructions in large-scaleand small-scale
Chapter 8 Summary and conclusion

Publication Year: 2006
Publisher: De Gruyter Mouton
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Language Documentation
Subject Language(s): Marquesan, North
Marquesan, South
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Format: Hardback
ISBN: 3110189496
ISBN-13: N/A
Pages: 702
Prices: Europe EURO 128.00