Reducing ‘case’ to denotational primitives
Nominal inflections in Albanian
The nominal inflection system of Albanian includes specifications of case, definiteness, number and nominal class (gender). Our analysis recognizes three types of properties as theoretically relevant, namely N(ominal class), Q(quantification), D(efiniteness). Q inflections are responsible for the so-called oblique case - effectively a dyadic operator yielding a ‘zonal inclusion’ (possession) relation between the element to which it attaches and the internal argument of the verb (dative) or the head of a noun phrase (genitive). Q inflections are further responsible for plurality, while N inflections satisfy argument-of contexts (accusative)and D characterizes EPP contexts(nominative). Syncretisms (e.g. of dative and genitive, nominative and accusative) are not the result of morphological rules requiring Late Insertion of exponents (Distributed Morphology). Rather they are instances of ambiguity, resolved in the syntax (different embeddings) or at the interpretive interface. As such they are compatible with projection of the morphosyntax from lexical entries.
Keywords: Case, nominative, accusative, oblique, syncretism, nominal class, plural, definiteness, possessor, locative.