Abstract

This paper examines the information structure of Abma, an Oceanic language of Pentecost Island, Vanuatu. Abma has four main syntactic strategies for manipulating the referential status of NPs while at the same time maintaining textual continuity: these are (1) constituent order, (2) syntactic-pragmatic marking, (3) phrasal movement, and (4) tail-head linkage. These approaches are examined individually, but also from the perspective of the larger, integrated system within which they operate. Constituent order is fairly rigid, but speakers are able to get around this constraint by taking advantage of special marking and sentence constructions that affect NP referentiality and information flow.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1527-9421
Print ISSN
0029-8115
Pages
pp. 1-35
Launched on MUSE
2009-07-23
Open Access
No
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