Re: Pronoun gender in Ikanirae Seru
|From:||Rachel Klippenstein <estel_telcontar@...>|
|Date:||Friday, April 4, 2003, 4:37|
--- "H. S. Teoh" wrote:
> Rachel Klippenstein wrote:
> > In Ikanirae Seru, the third person pronoun
> > distinguishes between 4 "genders"(...)
> > 'Personal' |eki| is used mainly for humans, as
> > well as any other personal being (...) However, >
> it is also used of languages, books and other
> > works of literature.
> Because languages and books convey personality?
You could put it that way. I think musical
instruments are also referred to with |eki|.
> > 'Animate' |aku| is actually restricted to higher
> > animals, essentially vertebrates. You would use
> > it of a dog, a bird, a fish, a lizard, but not of
> > a spider, mosquito or jellyfish. It is also used
> > for body parts, the sun, the moon, wind and water
> > (...)
> Interesting that body parts are considered
> differently from the personal category. In
> Ebisedian, almost all body parts are inflected for
> (biological) gender of the person it belongs to;(snip details)
The logic behind the Ikanirae Seru classification is
that body parts in themselves are not really personal;
your arm can't speak or think or have emotions (I
almost said "feel", but thatwould sound like it lacked
the sense of touch) etc. Classifyng body parts
according to masculine/feminine distinctions makes
sense to me, though I doubt I'd make a language that
> > 'Living' |sera| is used for lower animals and
> > It is also used for food, whether plant or animal
> > derived, as well as for obviously plant/animal
> > things such as wood and probably wool or leather.
> Interesting. What about borderline cases like
> rubber, which may be either
> organic or synthetic?
Rubber would probably get classified as non-living,
since in the experience of the creators of Ikanirae
Seru it is not closely plant-related. However, I
highly suspect there are borderline cases where
different speakers, or the same speaker in different
circumstances, may use living and non-living pronouns.
Depending how long the language lasted, these may
have become standardised in one direction or the
> > 'nonliving' |roha| is used for other nonliving and
> > abstract things.
> Sounds like the neuter gender in Ebisedian.
It's just all the leftovers.
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