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This groundbreaking study addresses all grammatical levels of Kifuliiru, a Bantu (J) language of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Together with its companion volume,The Kifuliiru Language, Volume 1: Phonology, Tone, and Morphological Derivation, this is one of the most thorough Bantu grammars available, aiming to describe all grammatical features found in over 100 narrative texts, and to provide natural examples.
At the word level, this book covers nouns, adjectives, adverbs, pronouns, demonstratives, locatives, ideophones and interjections. The chapter on verbs catalogues the amazing range of tenses, aspects, and moods. There is a comprehensive chapter on reduplication, and another on proverbs. At the clause level, information structure is carefully presented, including possible alternations of the default clause word order. A complete set of distinct interclausal relations is also laid out.
Of particular interest is a detailed study of narrative discourse, an area that most Bantu grammars to date do not cover. This study includes a fascinating section on tight-knit conversations. Also noted are various development markers, which demarcate two distinct levels of thematic salience. Intonation and pauses are also described, including a typical long pause between topic and comment..
Many of the discourse features described in this book are common to Bantu languages, and this volume thus invites further comparative study. The contents of this book have already provided a springboard for extensive discourse study in dozens of related languages.
This two volume set comprises "one of the most comprehensive grammars of any Bantu language."
– Derek Nurse, Research Professor in the Linguistics Department, Memorial University
Roger Van Otterloo received his master’s degree in linguistics from the University of Texas at Arlington in 1976. He and his wife Karen (author of Volume 1) have worked with SIL International® among the Kifuliiru-speaking community since 1980, living in their communities from 1980–1996 and continuing contact and involvement today.
The Kifuliiru Language, Two Volume Set is available. Save 12% on the purchase of the set over purchasing each volume separately.
List of Tables
A Brief Background to Writing Grammars in Africa by Derek Nurse
Contributing to Language Revitalization and Maintenance by John Watters
3. Pronouns and Demonstratives
4. Adjectives, Numbers, and Quantifiers
6. Ideophones, Interjections, and Greetings
7. Noun Phrases
8. Locative Phrases
9. Verb Words and Phrases
10. Clauses and Information Structure
11. Dependent Clauses and Interclausal Relations
12. Narrative Forms
13. Proverbs and Riddles