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Re: OFFLIST: Applicatives (was: Re: Requesting some challenging sentences)

From:David J. Peterson <dedalvs@...>
Date:Wednesday, November 2, 2005, 9:36
Tom let me know that this was supposed to go to the list. Or,�rather, that it
could profitably go to the
male love inevivi i'ala'i oku i ue pokulu'ume o heki a."�"No eternal reward
will forgive us now for wasting the dawn."��-Jim
Morrison����Begin forwarded message:��>
From: "tomhchappell" <tomhchappell@...>�> Date: October 30, 2005 1∞21∞23
PM PST�> To: "David J. Peterson" <dedalvs@...>�> Subject: OFFLIST:
Applicatives (was: Re: Requesting some�> challenging sentences)�>�>�>
Hi David.�>�> --- In, "David J. Peterson"
<dedalvs@G...>�> wrote:�>�>>�>> Thanks to Tom, who gave a very thorough
description of�>> applicativization.�>>�>�> Thanks!
<blush>�>�>�>> One quick question:�>>�>> Tom wrote:�>> <<�>> I
don't think the "third position" counts as "oblique" for the�>> purpose of
this terminology. Promoting "third position" to "second�>> position" in an
indirect/direct language is called "Dative�>>�> Movement";�>�>>
promoting "third position" to "second position" in a�>> secundative/primative
language is called "Anti-Dative Movement".�>>�>>>>�>>>>�>>�>> In the
last clause, do you mean "second position" to "third�>>�>
position"?�>�> No, that would be a "demotion"; I meant what I
wrote.�>�> The source of your confusion over what /I/ meant (as opposed
to�> what /someone else/ might mean) could be in my opinion -- shared by�>
at least a minority of people who might actually know -- that English�> is a
Secundative/Primative, not an Indirect/Direct, language.�>�> Thus "I gave
Sally-PRIMAT a book-SECUND" (pre- any movement)�> "I gave a book-(new PRIMAT)
/to/-Sally (OBLIQU)" (after Anti-Dative�> Movement)�>�> -----�>�>
And, anyway, those Bantuists I mentioned later obviously included�>
applicativization of recipients and/or benefactives�> as "applicatives"; and
recipients and benificiaries are�> often "datives" or "third roles"; so
"dative movement" would get�> counted as "applicative" by these particular
Bantuists when it took�> place in these particular Bantu languages, if
nowhere else and/or by�> no-one else.�>�>�>> Anyway, a last note,
applicativization, in my mind, is a process�>> like, say, relativization,
where it can only apply to certain�>>�> categories�>�>> which the
language defines, and so all you need to do is figure out�>> which categories
it applies to.�>>�>�> It was my impression that the question "Which roles
can be�> applicativized?" was language-specific.�> Is that what you are
saying here?�> I wanted to say that, and forgot to.�>�> -----�>�> I
am not positive why and when and for what uses applicativization�> becomes
current in a language. One thing I do remember finding�> striking is
this;�> In Accusative/Nominative languages with (whatever Klaiman called
the�> major supertype of voice system -- not "basic" like Sanskrit and�>
Greek and Fula and not "information salient" like Tagalog and Mayan�> and not
the kind Algonquin e.g. has, but the kind English e.g. has)�> voice, the only
way to make a Passive is to promote the Second Role --�> the Direct or
Primary Object -- to the First Role -- the Subject.�> In some languages with
an Applicative, anything can get promoted to�> Direct or Primary Object; then
in some of those languages, the�> resulting sentence can be Passivized. That
means that, in those�> languages, by a process of two transformations, any
participant, no�> matter how peripheral, can become the Subject.�>�>�>>
Applicatives are often used as�>> rhetorical/stylistic devices, or in
reference tracking.�>>�>�> I noticed, also, that this thread suggested it
was used in languages�> where relativization was restricted to higher
grammatical roles --�> the first two, for example.�>�>�>> So a
language�>> with a lot of applicatives, is probably one where reference
tracking�>> is extremely important. For example, you may have a language�>>
where an argument that's in focus can never be less than a direct�>> object.
So if you want to say, "My father has a pool cue that's�>>�> been�>�>>
in the family for generations. Yesterday, for the first time, he�>>�>
let�>�>> me play pool with it", you'd use an instrumental applicative in
the�>> second clause, and probably demote "pool" to some kind of olique�>>
argument, so you'd get, "Yesterday, for the first time, he let me�>>
with-play it by means of pool", or something like that. The�>>�>
opposite�>�>> would be strongly dispreferred. In fact, these types of
sentences�>> in English start to get bizarre the further away you push
the�>> introduced topic, because English is sensitive to this, as
well.�>>�>�> I have heard this before; that things that you flat can't
do�> (grammatically, at least) in "exotic" languages, are, in fact,�>
strongly dispreferred, after all, even in familiar languages.�>�>�>>
So�>> take the following:�>>�>> "My grandparents own a candy store. Lots
of children like to�>> take their friends there."�>>�>> getting
worse...�>>�>> "My grandparents own a candy store. I hear that mayor
smith�>> once told a secretary to leave his notebook there."�>>�>> and
yet worse...�>>�>> "My grandparents own a candy store. In Canada, Bill
heard about�>> a couple that owned a farm near Sonoma that had been
married�>> by a minister who'd once went to it."�>>�>> None of these is
ungrammatical, just a little odd. This is because�>> when you introduce a
topic in English, one expects the subject of�>> the next sentence to usually
be the same--especially when the�>> subject is pronominalized. Relative
clauses are also used often,�>> and this is where English takes advantage of
its ability to�>>�> relativize�>�>> a lot of things. For the first one,
for example, you could say:�>>�>> "My grandparents own a candy store where
lots of children like�>> to take their friends."�>>�>> That'd be
relativizing a location, but perhaps the more natural�>> would be to turn
into an goal...�>>�>> "My grandparents own a candy store that lots of
children like�>> to take their friends to."�>>�>> One thing I've found
(and this is by no means a direct correlation;�>> just something I've
noticed) is that languages that relativize fewer�>> positions tend to have
more applicatives. Often you'll find if a�>> language has five or more types
of applicatives, only subjects can�>> be relativized. There's one language in
particular I'm thinking of,�>> but I can't remember it's name... Anyway,
that's my two cents.�>>�>>�>�> And, I thank you for your two cents'
worth, which was indeed worth at�> least that much, or more. (to me,
anyway)�>�> In my yet-to-be-incarnated conlang, I am thinking of having�>
information-salience ("topic" and "comment", and "focus"�> and "background",
and "given" and "new") morphologically marked;�> separately from semantic or
thematic or theta- roles. As long as I�> am so doing it seems to me that
reference-tracking is something that�> should be easily made independent too.
I was thinking of having�> three (I really only need two, probably, but three
is more�> traditional) "pivots" ("first pivot", "second pivot", "third pivot"
--�> I'm so creative when it comes to names) marked in each clause,�>
according to how likely they are to also be participants of nearby�> clauses
-- earlier or later co-ordinate clauses, or super-ordinate�> clauses. I
figure I'll say something like, in the event of a tie�> for "likelihood", the
"first pivot" will be the one that's likeliest�> to be a co-participant of
the closest preceding clauses, and�> the "second pivot" will be the one
that's likeliest to be a co-�> participant of the closest following clauses
-- or something like�> that.�>�>�>�>> -David�>>
*******************************************************************�>> "A
male love inevivi i'ala'i oku i ue pokulu'ume o heki a."�>> "No eternal
reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn."�>>�>> -Jim
Morrison�>>�>>�>>�>>�>�> Thanks for
writing.�>�> Tom H.C. in MI�>�>�>�>�>�>�