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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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To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.

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Query Details

Query Subject:   Languages That Use Copies as Anaphors?
Author:   Felicia Lee
Submitter Email:  click here to access email

Linguistic LingField(s):  Syntax

Query:   Hello,

I have been working on a language (one of the Zapotec languages of Mexico)
that commonly expresses both local and nonlocal binding relations with
copies of the bound element: in this language, one can say (without any
logophoric or guise-changing reading) things like ''The priest killed the
priest'' meaning ''the priest killed himself''. Moreover, the bound copy
receives a bound variable reading: ''the priest killed the priest and so
did the teacher'' means ''the teacher also killed himself''.

I am trying to compile an inventory of other languages that show this bound
copy pattern; so far, the only ones I know of are Thai, Hmong, and Vietnamese.

If any of you know of other languages that show this pattern, please let me
know. I will report back to the group with a summary of my results. Thanks!

Felicia Lee
LL Issue: 19.1535
Date posted: 10-May-2008


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