Abstract

Coding of transitive clauses in Movima (lowland Bolivia) including a speech act participant reflects a person hierarchy, 1 > 2 > 3; when a lower-ranking person acts on a higher-ranking one, the verb is marked as inverse. This article investigates the conditions under which inverse marking occurs when a transitive clause contains only third-person arguments. A quantitative analysis of spontaneous speech data shows that, while the discourse factors involved still require further research, animacy plays an important role. For instance, inverse marking never occurs when an entity higher in the animacy hierarchy acts on a lower ranking one.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1944-6527
Print ISSN
0003-5483
Pages
pp. 294-314
Launched on MUSE
2015-11-06
Open Access
No
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