Chapter published in:Antipassive: Typology, diachrony, and related constructions
Edited by Katarzyna Janic and Alena Witzlack-Makarevich
[Typological Studies in Language 130] 2021
► pp. 447–480
Chapter 14The profile and development of the Maa (Eastern Nilotic)
Maa (Eastern Nilotic) language varieties have nominative/accusative syntactic patterns, but also an antipassive construction marked by the verb suffix -ɪshɔ(r). This suffix turns an otherwise transitive construction into an intransitive one that can no longer express the P. Semantically the -ɪshɔ(r) construction focuses on the action of the verb or profiles long-term characteristics or ability of the agent. It is not required in imperfective situations, but most commonly does correlate with them. Interestingly, -ɪshɔ(r) may occur on some intransitive roots where it appears to highlight imperfectivity. The -ɪshɔ(r) antipassive construction does not appear to reconstruct to proto-Eastern Nilotic, though a verb root cognate with Maa ɪshɔ(r) ‘give’ does go back to a Proto-Maa-Lotuko-Lopit genetic node (though non-Maa languages within this group may lack the antipassive function). Given similarities between ɪshɔ(r) ‘give’ and the suffix -ɪshɔ(r), the possibility of an antipassive developing from ‘give’ is explored. Potential “drift” or borrowing under Kalenjin (Southern Nilotic) influence is also noted.
- 2.Basic Maa morphosyntax
- 3.The Maa antipassive
- 3.1Syntax and propositional semantics of the -ɪshɔ(r) construction with (di)transitive roots
- 3.2Functional profile of the -ɪshɔ(r)
- 3.2.1Properties of the P
- 3.2.2Focus on the action or static situation
- 3.2.3Imperfective aspect situations
- 3.2.4Long-term characteristics: ‘Ability to x’
- 3.2.5 agent orientation
- 4.-ɪshɔ(r) with intransitive roots
- 5.Origin of the Maa antipassive
- 5.1Parallels with the Maa verb root ɪshɔ(r) ‘give’
- 5.2Possible cognacy with other Nilotic antipassive(-like)
- 5.2.1Potential cognates in Eastern Nilotic languages
- 5.2.2Borrowing or drift influenced by Southern Nilotic?
Published online: 23 March 2021
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Cited by 2 other publications
Janic, Katarzyna & Alena Witzlack-Makarevich
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