Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Grammaticalization from a Typological Perspective$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Heiko Narrog and Bernd Heine

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198795841

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198795841.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 14 April 2021

Grammaticalization in Africa

Grammaticalization in Africa

Two contrasting hypotheses

(p.16) 2 Grammaticalization in Africa
Grammaticalization from a Typological Perspective

Bernd Heine

Oxford University Press

Sub-Saharan Africa is an area for which hardly any earlier written documents are available. The student of African languages is therefore at a disadvantage when it comes to reconstructing processes of grammaticalization. That this is nevertheless possible has been demonstrated in a number of studies, using a conjunction of internal reconstruction and diachronic typological generalizations as a tool. After presenting an overview of the state of the art in grammaticalization studies in African languages, the present chapter is concerned with a more theoretical issue, namely the question of how grammaticalization processes arise. To this end, two contrasting hypotheses are discussed, namely the ‘parallel reduction’ and the ‘meaning-first’ hypotheses. Evidence from African languages suggests that it is the second hypothesis that is correct, but that both hypotheses nevertheless have their place in a framework of grammaticalization.

Keywords:   decategorialization, desemanticization, comparative of inequality, erosion, future tense, grammaticalization, meaning-first hypothesis, parallel reduction, proximative, reflexive

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .