A grammar of Kayan, a Tibeto-Burman language

Authors:
Date:
2010
Degree:
PhD, La Trobe University
Extent:
xxvi, 504
Abstract:
This thesis is the first grammatical description of Kayan, a Tibeto-Burman language of the Karen branch spoken in Burma/Myanmar and Thailand. It is based on the Pekon dialect spoken in Southern Shan State, Burma/Myanmar using data collected by the author from several displaced communities now living in Thailand. Kayan is tonal, mildly agglutinative and with a preference for prefixes. Core participants are not grammatically marked either in the noun phrase or on the verb. The identification of semantic roles is handled by AVO linear order. The thesis consists of thirteen chapters and an appendix. The introduction provides background information on the language and its speakers, geographic setting, genetic classification and the thesis methodology and assumptions. Chapter Two describes the phonology (including the tonal system) and the newly developed orthography. Chapter Three starts the grammatical section of the thesis with a discussion of how to define a word in Kayan and then gives a brief summary of the different word classes that are relevant to the grammar. Chapter Four describes nouns and nominal morphology. Chapter Five describes verbs and verbal morphology. Chapter Six describes the remaining word classes. Nominal phrases (noun, prepositional and classifier phrases) are covered in Chapter Seven. Simple clauses are described in Chapter Eight. Then in Chapter Nine clause modifications are discussed. Non-declarative speech acts are described in Chapter Ten. Chapter Eleven describes clause combining and Chapter Twelve discusses information structure. The final chapter provides a summary and suggestions for further research. An appendix with five interlinearised texts and an up-to-date bibliography of Karen linguistics completes the thesis.
Publication Status:
Published
Table of Contents:
FULL TABLE OF CONTENTS III LIST OF TABLES XII LIST OF FIGURES XV LIST OF MAPS XV ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS XVII THESIS SUMMARY XIX CONVENTIONS XXI ABBREVIATIONS XXIII 1 INTRODUCTION 1 2 PHONOLOGY 45 3 THE WORD AND WORD CLASSES 83 4 NOMINALS AND NOUN MORPHOLOGY 117 5 VERBS AND VERBAL MORPHOLOGY 153 6 MINOR WORD CLASSES 187 7 THE NOUN PHRASE AND PREPOSITIONAL PHRASE 251 8 SIMPLE CLAUSES 281 9 CLAUSE MODIFICATIONS 309 10 NON-DECLARATIVE SENTENCES 337 11 INTERCLAUSAL CONNECTIONS 359 12 INFORMATION STRUCTURE 415 13 SUMMARY AND FURTHER RESEARCH 429 APPENDIXES 437 TEXT 1: EH AND TEH 439 TEXT 2: TIGER AND BEAR 447 TEXT 3: WHY PLANTS DON’T TALK 453 TEXT 4: THE SKY IS FALLING 459 TEXT 5: COOKING RICE 472 BIBLIOGRAPHY OF KAREN LINGUISTICS 473 REFERENCES 491
Country:
Myanmar
Subject Languages:
Content Language:
Field:
Work Type:
Subject:
Phonology
descriptive grammar
Nature of Work:
Entry Number:
38900