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Academic Paper


Title: Jùu and Kamlaŋ Revisited
Author: Prang Thiengburanathum
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Payap University
Linguistic Field: Cognitive Science; Semantics; Syntax
Abstract: This paper presents the syntax and semantics of kamlaŋ and jùu in Standard Thai from a cognitive and Role and Reference Grammar perspective. Traditionally, kamlaŋ and jùu are considered to be aspect markers, which are referred to as progressive and continuous respectively (Kullavanijaya and Bisang (to appear)).

I suggest that kamlaŋ is an aspect marker, but jùu is not – not yet being fully grammaticalized to an aspect function. Rather, it is a locator pinpointing an event in space, time, or attribute. This effect is derived from its lexical verbal source meaning ‘to stay’, which semantically takes two arguments: locatum and location. Its "continuity" sense is a logical consequence of the experience of remaining at the same place through time. The notion of continuity can be understood as non-changeability. As for kamlaŋ , it has a dynamatic/constant change value deriving from its lexical noun source meaning ‘energy’. Due to their distinct lexical sources, kamlaŋ and jùu have different semantic structures which motivate their syntactic contrasts. For example, jùu can occur with adverbs of duration like as tʰáŋ kʰɨɨn ‘all night’, and tâŋnaan ‘for a long time’, but kamlaŋ cannot; whereas kamlaŋ can occur with tɕûaŋ níi ‘during’, but jùu cannot.

For Thai regarded as tenseless it has been suggested that temporal expressions are used to encode events in time. Is this sufficient? Temporal expressions situate the whole event (including all sub-events) in time with respect to the absolute locus. They modify the clause as a whole. Aspect markers encode the internal temporal contour of an event. My suggestion is that there is another layer where sub-events are connected. In addition to their aspectual functions, kamlaŋ and jùu are temporal linkers connecting sub-events where one event functions as a relative reference. Kamlaŋ encodes simultaneity between two events, while jùu encodes that one event moves toward the other. These alternate construals are motivated from their lexical sources.

The locator effect plays a crucial role in how jùu behaves. Because of this effect, jùu does not simply link events but it pools the events to form a tighter relation. This clearly shows in kamlaŋ…jùu construction where jùu pinpoints the event in progress modified by kamlaŋ in space, time, or discourse time.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: In Progress


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