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Products for grant FN-260675-18

FN-260675-18
Noun Categorization and Complex Predication in Secoya, an Amazonian Language
, University of New Mexico

Grant details: https://securegrants.neh.gov/publicquery/main.aspx?f=1&gn=FN-260675-18

The functions of nominal classification in Secoya discourse (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: The functions of nominal classification in Secoya discourse
Author: Rosa Vallejos
Abstract: This talks focusses on the discourse use of the nominal classification system of Secoya (Western Tukanoan, ISO: sey), as spoken in Peruvian Amazonia. The hypothesis at play is that Secoya has a single but complex classification system. The data examined here suggests that the language has concurring subsystems that complement each other, in the sense of Gomez-Imbert (2007), Seifart and Payne (2007), and Fedden and Corbett (2017). Secoya, as many other languages in the world, has formal mechanisms to organize nominal referents following three semantic parameters: animacy, biological sex, and shape. Animacy, refers to the degree to which entities are capable of human-like volition behavior (Silverstein 1976). Gender is a complex socio-culturally constructed classification on the basis of biological differences between males and females (McConnell-Ginet 1988). Shape includes dimensionality, axial geometry, curved/straight edges, negative spaces, and orientated axis, properties that play a crucial role in object recognition, visual processing, and language acquisition (Seifart 2005). In Secoya, these three semantic parameters have ramifications in grammatical subsystems. They have their own markers, their own loci, but share the functional load.
Date: 04/18/2019
Primary URL: http://www.ddl.cnrs.fr/colloques/NCW2019/
Primary URL Description: The international workshop was organized by the Dynamique Du Langage research center (DDL) and hosted by the MSH Lyon Saint-Étienne (MSH-LSE) in Lyon (France)
Conference Name: NOUN CATEGORIZATION: FROM GRAMMAR TO COMMUNICATIVE INTERACTION

Nominal classification in Secoya: semantic distinctions and discourse functions (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: Nominal classification in Secoya: semantic distinctions and discourse functions
Author: Rosa Vallejos
Abstract: This usage-based study deals with the nominal classification system of Secoya (Western Tukanoan, ISO: sey), as spoken in Peruvian Amazonia. It looks at the distributional properties of the classification devices with a focus on the semantic distinctions they encode, as wells as their functions in discourse. The data examined here suggests that the language has concurrent subsystems that complement each other (Gomez-Imbert 2007; Seifart & Payne 2007; Fedden & Corbett 2017). Secoya has formal mechanisms to organize nominal referents following three semantic parameters: animacy, biological sex, and shape. Animacy, refers to the degree to which entities are capable of human-like volition behavior (Silverstein 1976). Gender is a complex socio-culturally constructed classification on the basis of biological differences between males and females (McConnell-Ginet 1988). Shape includes dimensionality, axial geometry, curved/straight edges, negative spaces, and orientated axis, properties that play a crucial role in object recognition, visual processing, and language acquisition (Seifart 2005). In Secoya, these three semantic parameters have ramifications in grammatical subsystems. The distribution of subsets of markers can be predicted by looking at specific grammatical constructions.
Date: 10/12/2019
Primary URL: https://ailla.utexas.org/node/185
Primary URL Description: Archive of Indigenous Languages of Latin America
Conference Name: IX Conference on Indigenous Languages of Latin America (CILLA), Austin, TX

The role of shape and animacy in categorization: evidence from the Amazon (Conference Paper/Presentation)
Title: The role of shape and animacy in categorization: evidence from the Amazon
Author: Rosa Vallejos
Abstract: Languages throughout the world have dedicated mechanisms to specify information about the shape, animacy, consistency, size, location, or utility of the entities around us. An important question in linguistics is to what extent the nominal classification system of a language mirrors the way speakers see the world they live in, and to what extent the documented similarities reflect underlying, general cognitive processes in the human mind. Thus, an adequate theory of human language requires a broad sampling of diverse languages. Amazonian languages have been identified as a priority in this respect, since they are both poorly documented and highly endangered. This project investigates Secoya, an endangered Tukanoan language spoken in Peruvian Amazonia, and provides new bodies of data from unique settings. The concrete outcome will be a morphosyntactic and semantic account of Secoya’s nominal classification system, situating the analysis in the broader Amazonian context. From a theoretical perspective, Secoya provides an excellent case scenario to test current typologies of nominal classification. There has been a traditional belief that the classification of entities can be achieved by either gender systems or classifier systems. Secoya has both gender and classifiers. This project will contribute to the development of a framework in which both systems can be analyzed together. Also, a better understanding of Secoya can shed light on language contact in Amazonia. Secoya is one of the few languages of the Tukanoan family that is outside of the well-known Vaupes linguistic area where several contact-induced processes are taking place. Secoya is particularly important to inform debates regarding the direction of influence among systems. More broadly, this project contributes to the documentation of imperiled cultural heritage, while also enriching our understanding of the diversity of the world’s languages.
Date: 3/18/2019
Primary URL: https://collegium.universite-lyon.fr/rosa-vallejos-the-role-of-shape-and-animacy-in-nominal-classification-evidence-from-the-amazon-84314.kjsp?RH=1522927788210
Primary URL Description: Collegium de Lyon
Secondary URL Description: Collegium de Lyon Seminar
Conference Name: Collegium de Lyon Seminar


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