On differential object marking in Southern and Central Selkup

Hannah Wegener

Abstract


The phenomenon of differential object marking has been investigated for a number of languages of the world. Studies have been carried out for individual languages as well as from a typological point of view. It is broadly described as an alternation in case marking of the direct objects. Triggers for the case alternation can be the referent’s animacy, information structure, modus, and definiteness among others. In the present study data from Central and Southern Selkup are investigated with respect to case marking of nominal and pronominal direct objects. Nominal direct objects exhibit instances of accusative and nominative marking while the latter show consistent accusative marking. Analyzing the contributing factors for the different kinds of case marking, imperative mood appeared to have an impact, the information status as well as structural properties of the object, i.e. whether it is part of a direct object phrase or coordination. Possessive direct objects behave similar in that they are mostly in accusative and only occasionally nominative marked. As opposed to the non-possessive direct objects, no variation in information status can be registered.

Keywords


argument marking; differential object marking; Uralic languages; Samoyedic; Selkup; syntax

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.12697/jeful.2018.9.1.07

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ISSN-L 1736-8987
ISSN 1736-8987 (print)
ISSN 2228-1339 (online)