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Re: THEORY: [CONLANG] Case mismatches (was: Re: Viko Notes)

From:Marcus Smith <smithma@...>
Date:Friday, June 28, 2002, 22:03
On Fri, 28 Jun 2002, And Rosta wrote:

> Marcus: > > My thesis is broadly concerned with instances of 'unbalanced > > coordination', 'partial agreement' in particular. By 'unbalanced > > coordination', I mean contexts where [X & Y] is grammatical, but [Y & X] > > is not. > > Does your thesis consider English data? If so, can I get a copy?
It generally ignores English, except to point out that neither pattern is perfect. I'm currently revising the thesis, so it won't be ready for people to look at for perhaps a month.
> > The case facts that started this thread are another type of unbalanced > > coordination, because the case of the conjuncts depends on the ordering of > > conjuncts (among other things). "him and I" is good, but "I and him" is > > bad. > > But "me and he" is also bad.
This is where things start getting really messy, and part of the reason I ignore English. (Besides not caring so much about English syntax....) Basically everyone I talked to judged "me and he" ungrammatical, but some rated it better than "I and he" and others rated it worse. Some people preferred "he and me" over "me and he", but others were reverse.
> However, "Her and he are" is worse than "She and him are",
My suspicion, born of experience, is that if you test lots of people, those judgements will vary. The pattern I found for English (speakers from California, New York, and Georgia), involving the first person singular is: Pefect: he and I him and me me and him him and I Not so good, but could be worse: I and him Terrible: I and he me and he he and me There is variation about which is better or worse within each grouping, but the groups were pretty clear. (Except a few people who put "I and him" in the "Terrible" category.) The phrase people were happiest with (in general), was "me and him", even over "him and me". It's the same order they prefer in Pima: in some contexts, it is even ungrammatical in Pima to not have the first person as the first conjunct. Marcus