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Revitalizing Endangered Languages

Edited by Justyna Olko & Julia Sallabank

Revitalizing Endangered Languages "This guidebook provides ideas and strategies, as well as some background, to help with the effective revitalization of endangered languages. It covers a broad scope of themes including effective planning, benefits, wellbeing, economic aspects, attitudes and ideologies."

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Dissertation Information

Title: Tundra Nenets Inflection Add Dissertation
Author: Tapani Salminen Update Dissertation
Institution: University of Helsinki, Department of Finno-Ugrian Studies
Completed in: 1997
Linguistic Subfield(s): Language Documentation; Morphology;
Subject Language(s): Nenets
Director(s): Juha Janhunen

Abstract: This study deals with the morphology of the Tundra Nenets language, spoken in Arctic Russia and north-western Siberia. It aims at a comprehensive description of Tundra Nenets inflection. The model of description is the so-called realizational, or non-morphemic one, and arguments are presented in favour of the adoption of this particular model. The general approach is, however, language-specific as well as synchronic.

Central problems in inflectional morphology involve its relationship with derivation, the status of morphophonology, and the interaction between inflection, lexicon, and syntax. It is argued that morphology must be recognized as an independent component of grammar, which incorporates morphophonology. Derivation and inflection are seen as basically united, although they can be distinguished by specifically morphological criteria.

The description of inflection covers the two major word classes, verbs and nouns, as well as the minor classes, i.e. personal pronouns and various groups of adverbs and postpositions. Special emphasis is placed on a rule format which would capture the relevant generalizations in a simple, readable manner. To meet the requirements of such a morphologically and morphophonologically complex language as Tundra Nenets, the rule system makes extensive use of the concepts of default and referral.