Article published in:Notes from the field on perspective-indexing constructions: Irregular shifts and perspective persistence
Edited by Stef Spronck, An Van linden, Caroline Gentens and María Sol Sansiñena
[Functions of Language 27:1] 2020
► pp. 55–77
Recycling through perspective persistence in Monsang (Trans-Himalayan)
Reconstructing the desiderative from a reported intentionality construction
In a reported intentionality construction, intentionality is expressed as reported speech/thought (‘s/he says/thinks, <I will go>’). The quoted clause must contain a first person form and refer to the future. Reported intentionality displays perspective persistence and an accompanying apparent form-meaning mismatch, as it structurally marks the speech-act participant perspective of the volitional agent despite idiomatically translating only from the perspective of the current speaker. While this construction has been examined in languages around the world, this is the first treatment for the Trans-Himalayan (or Sino-Tibetan/Tibeto-Burman) language family. Monsang (South-Central; Northeast India) is shown to have a reported intentionality construction of the cross-linguistic type. In addition, there is a desiderative construction in the language that does not display perspective persistence but is argued to reconstruct back to a reported intentionality construction. Further evidence from synchronic and diachronic quotative constructions in Monsang is presented that illustrates the prominence of quotative-derived expressions of intentionality in Monsang verbal morphology.
Published online: 15 April 2020
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