Article published in:Functional-Historical Approaches to Explanation: In honor of Scott DeLancey
Edited by Tim Thornes, Erik Andvik, Gwendolyn Hyslop and Joana Jansen
[Typological Studies in Language 103] 2013
► pp. 223–236
Predicting reference form
A Pear Story Study of information status, thematic role and animacy in Meithei (Manipuri, Meiteiron)
In retellings of the Pear Story in Meithei (Tibeto-Burman, Northeast India), it was found that NP shape–whether a lexical or zero anaphor is used – is determined not only by the cognitive accessibility of the NP but also by its animacy. Animacy also played a role in the morphological sequences that occur with NPs: animate NPs exhibit more varied morphology than inanimate NPs. This study concludes that NP shape and morphology are determined only partially by cognitive accessibility. A narrator's need to provide a dynamic view of animate NPs and a static view of inanimate entities also determines NP shape.
Published online: 25 July 2013