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Genders and ClassifiersA Cross-Linguistic Typology$
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Alexandra Y. Aikhenvald and Elena I. Mihas

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198842019

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198842019.001.0001

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Genders and classifiers in Kampa (Arawak) languages of Peru

Genders and classifiers in Kampa (Arawak) languages of Peru

(p.30) 2 Genders and classifiers in Kampa (Arawak) languages of Peru
Genders and Classifiers

Elena I. Mihas

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the semantics, morphosyntax, and functions of the gender and classifier systems of Kampa Arawak languages of Peru. All Kampa languages have genders and classifiers. Their origin and diachronic development are different. Gender agreement morphology comes from the pan-Kampa verbal person markers. The sources of multiple classifiers are bound nouns inflected on the pattern of obligatorily possessed nouns, unbound nouns, and bound verb roots; these are considered in the context of compounding and noun incorporation. Gender marking is mandatory and exhaustive, being reflected in the agreement marking on noun modifiers (adjectives, demonstratives, possessor NP), possessive pronouns, demonstrative identifiers, personal pronouns, verbs, and coordinating operators. Multiple classifiers show less exuberant distribution, occurring on nouns, verbs, number words, and adjectives. Classifiers are neither sensitive to gender nor animacy. Classifiers are semantically motivated, showing semantic agreement with controller nouns. The multiple classifier system does not participate in syntactic parsing of constituents via morphological agreement. The main purpose of their use is pragmatic.

Keywords:   Arawak, Kampa, gender, classifier, compounding, incorporation

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