Pronominal possession in Faroese and the parameters of alienability/inalienability
The paper seeks to demonstrate that grammatically relevant distinctions of alienable vs. inalienable possession are not completely uncommon in modern Indo-European languages of Europe. A detailed analysis of pronominal attributive possession in presentday Faroese shows that there is a clearly defined system at work determined by semantic, syntactic, and pragmatic factors. The interplay of these factors is described on the basis of a corpus analysis of modern Faroese prose. It is argued that the presence or absence of the alienability-inalienability distinction in languages is not exclusively a structurally motivated phenomenon as suggested by Nichols (1992). The authors claim that alienability/inalienability in grammar is, instead, semanti- cally motivated.
Published online: 08 April 2002
Cited by 3 other publications
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