Chapter published in:Non-Canonically Case-Marked Subjects: The Reykjavík-Eyjafjallajökull papers
Edited by Jóhanna Barðdal, Na'ama Pat-El and Stephen Mark Carey
[Studies in Language Companion Series 200] 2018
► pp. 23–54
Chapter 2Non-nominative and depersonalized subjects in the Balkans
Areality vs. genealogy
The languages of the Balkan sprachbund are surveyed here with regard to their constructions that show non-nominative subjects, typically in impersonal constructions. The issue of origins is considered, specifically as to whether these constructions represent inheritances from some earlier stage of the relevant languages or instead reflect the effects of contact. In the end, it is argued that a mix of areality, i.e. contact, and genealogy, i.e. inheritance, is needed to explain these constructions, with a nod required as well to typologically common patternings.
- 2.1Atmospheric and natural phenomena
- 2.2Experiencer constructions
- 2.3Impersonal constructions with corresponding personal forms
- 2.4Impersonal passives, real and potential
- 2.4.1Gnomic impersonal passives: Verbs of speaking/communicating
- 2.4.2Impersonal passives for generalized activity
- 2.4.3Impersonal passives expressing potential
- 2.5Impersonal modals
- 2.5.1Internal disposition
- 2.5.2Modality of possibility and necessity
- 2.6‘Have’ existential vs. ‘be’ possession
- 3.Non-imperative imperatives
Published online: 02 November 2018
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