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The morphosyntax of adverbs in Shupamem


par Abass NGOUNGOUO YIAGNIGNI
Université de Yaoundé 1 - Master en Linguistique Générale 2016
  

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2.9.2.2.7. Frequency Adverbs

Frequency adverbs allow both focalization and topicalization in Shupamem. This is shown in (45) and (46) below:

(45) Focalization

a) m?ìn suìu taìsaÌ ?kaÌ iìm?Ì?

child washed dish once

«The child washed the dish once»

b) aì ?kaÌ iìm?Ì? mb?ì kaì m?ìn suìu taìsaÌ n?ì

Cl. once is how child washed dish Decl.

«It is ONCE that the child washed the dish»

c) m?ìn suìu taìsaÌ poì ?kaÌ iìm?Ì?

child washed dish Foc. once

«The child washed the dish ONCE»

(46) Topicalization

a) m?ìn suìu taìsaÌ ?kaÌ iìm?Ì?

child washed dish once

«The child washed the dish once»

b) ?kaÌ iìm?Ì? n?ì, m?ìn suìu taìsaÌ

once Top child washed dish

«Once, the child washed the dish»

Frequency adverbs can raise through focalization (45.b) or can be focalized in-situ (45.c), and can also be topicalized (41.b). These operations are tenable both for the frequency adverb I, that is, frequency adverbs with «?gu?» (every) and the frequencyadverbs II, that is, those with «?kaì» (the number of times an action occurred).

2.9.2.2.8. Comparative Adverbs

Comparison in Shupamem is marked by the morpheme «jékaìa» (like). This morpheme, alongside the compared element, can be focalized and topicalized, as shown in (47) and (48) below:

(47) Focalization

a) maÌtwaì jaì? jékaìa ?k?Ì??r?Ì

car passed like motorbike

«The car passed like a motorbike»

b) aì jékaìa?k?Ì??r?Ì mb?ì kaì maÌtwaì jaì? n?ì

Cl. like motorbike is how car passed Decl.

«It is LIKE THE MOTORBIKE that the car passed»

c) maÌtwaì jaì? poì jékaìa ?k?Ì??r?Ì

car passed Foc like motorbike

«The car passed LIKE A MOTORBIKE»

(48) Topicalization

a) maÌtwaì jaì? jékaìa ?k?Ì??r?Ì

car passed like motorbike

«The car passed like a motorbike

b) jékaìa ?k?Ì??r?Ì-?ì, maÌtwaì jaì?

like motorbike-Top car passed

«Like the motorbike, the car passed»

As indicated in the previous cases, focalization of comparative adverbs through the cleft copula «» require the use of «mb?ì jékaì» (which is how) and the declarative morpheme «n?ì» at the end of the sentence, as shown in (47.b). They can be focalized with «poì» (47.c)and topicalized (48.b).

2.9.2.2.9. Exocomparative Adverbs

Similar to the comparative adverbs, exocomparative adverbs allow focalization and topicalization. Let's consider the data in (49) and (50) below:

(49) Focalization

a) maÌtwaì jaì? nduìniì

car passed differently

«The car passed differently»

b) aì nduìniì mb?ì kaì maÌtwaì jaì? n?ì

Cl. differently is how car passed Decl.

«It is DIFFERENTLY that the car passed»

c) maÌtwaì jaì? poì nduìniì

car passed Foc differently

«The car passed DIFFERENTLY»

(50) Topicalization

a) maÌtwaì jaì? nduìniì

car passed differently

«The car passed differently»

b) nduìniì-n?ì, maÌtwaì jaì?

differently-Top car passed

«Differently, the car passed»

It can be seen from (49.b) above that focalization of exocomparative adverbs through the cleft copula «» requires the use of «mb?ì jékaì» (which is how) and the declarative morpheme «n?ì» at the end of the sentence. It can also be seen that exocomparative adverbs can be focalized in-situ (49.c) and topicalized (50.b).

2.10. IMPACT OF ADVERB FRONTING ON THE ADVERBS RELATIVE ORDER

This section studies the changes that occur in the order of appearance of adverbs as the result of their fronting. In other words, I seek to know whether focalization and topicalization can change the order of adverbs that was previously considered irreversible. In fact, while studying the relative order of adverbs, it was shown that six cases out of the twenty-one studied, are irreversible. These are the orders epistemic>manner, epistemic>manner>temporal, anterior tense>repetitive, progressive>repetitive, progressive>durative, and exocomparative>manner.

Here, I proceed by focalization and topicalization the lower adverbs, in order to know whether it can precede the other one. It should be noted that focalization here is concerned only with the cleft copula, given that it is the one that triggers extraction to the left periphery.

2.10.1. Epistemic>Manner

As previously shown, epistemic adverbs always precede manner adverbs in the unmarked structures. This is shown in (51) below:

(51) a) m?ì? mb?ì m?ìn lié poìkériì

maybe child slept well

«Maybe the child slept well»

b) *m?ìn lié poìkériì m?ì? mb?ì

child slept well maybe

Intended: «The child slept well, maybe»

c) m?ìn k?ì mbuì? ndié poìkériì

child unavoidably slept well

«The child unavoidably slept well».

d) *m?ìn lié poìkériì k?ì mbuì?

child slept well unavoidably

Intended: «The child unavoidably slept well»

If focalized or topicalized, the manner adverbscan come before the epistemic adverb in the structure. In fact, its focalization triggers its raising to the left periphery and hence, it precedes the epistemic adverb. This is shown in (52.b) for focalization, and (52.c) for topicalization.

(52) a) m?ì? mb?ì m?ìn lié poìkériì

maybe child slept well

«Maybe the child slept well»

b) aì poìkériì mb?Ì kaì m?Ìn lié n?Ì, m?ì? mb?ì

Cl. well is how child slept Decl. maybe

«It is WELL that child slept, maybe»

c) poìkériì-n?ì, m?ì? mb?ì m?ìn lié ??ìreÌ

well-Top maybe child slept so

«Well, maybe the child slept (so)»

These structures show that, in case of focalization with «» (cleft copula) and topicalization, the manner adverb can come before the epistemic adverb without rendering the sentence ungrammatical. However, this is a complex structure and is rarely used in discourse.

2.10.2. Epistemic>manner>temporal

In the order epistemic>manner>temporal, the epistemic adverb precedes both the manner and the temporal adverbs. None of these post-verbal adverbs come before the epistemic adverb in the unmarked form. This is shown in (53) below:

(53) a) m?ì? mb?ì m?ìn lié poìkériì n?Ì ?yì?

maybe child slept well in the night

«Maybe the child slept well in the night»

b) * m?ìn lié poìkériì n?Ì ?yì? m?ì? mb?ì

child slept well in the night maybe

Intended: «The child slept well in the night, maybe»

c) * m?ìn lié poìkériì m?ì? mb?ì n?Ì ?yì?

child slept well maybe in the night

Intended: «The child slept well in the night, maybe»

The order in (53.a) is grammatical given that the epistemic adverb «m?ì? mb?ì» (maybe) precedes the manner adverb «poìkériì" and the temporal adverb «n?Ì ?yì? « (in the night). In contrast, those in (53.b) and (53.c) are ungrammatical because the manner and the temporal adverbs precede the epistemic adverb.

Through focalization and topicalization, these two adverbs can precede the epistemic adverbs. This is illustrated below in (54.b) for focalization, and (54.c) for topicalization:

(54) a) m?ì? mb?ì m?ìn lié poìkériì n?Ì ?yì?

maybe child slept well in the night

«Maybe the child slept well in the night»

b) aì poìkériì n?Ì ?yì? mb?Ì kaì m?Ììn lié n?Ì, m?ì? mb?ì

Cl. well in the night is how child slept Decl. maybe

«It is WELL IN THE NIGHT that the child slept, maybe»

c) n?Ì ?yì? n?Ì, poìkériì-n?ì, m?ì? mb?ì m?ìn lié ??ìr?Ì

in the nightTop well-Top maybe child slept so

«In the night, well, the child slept, maybe»

With focalization in (54.b), the two post-verbal adverbs «poìkériì» (well) and «n?Ì ?yì?» (in the night) have been fronted and thus, precede the epistemic adverb «m?ì? mb?ì» (maybe). In the same light, they have been topicalized in (54.c) and precede the epistemic adverb.

2.10.3. Anterior tense>repetitive

While studying the relative order of the anterior tense and the repetitive adverbs, it was noticed that the anterior tense «t?Ìt» (already) precedes the repetitive aspectual adverb «piÌt» (again), as shown in (55) below:

(55) a) m?ìn t?Ìt mbiìt n??ì paìj?ì

child Ant. Rep. eat. food

«The child has already eaten food again»

b) *m?ìn piìt t?Ìt n??ì paìj?Ì

child Rep. Ant. eat food

Intended: «The child already has eaten food again»

It should be remembered that neither the anterior tense nor the repetitive adverbs can be topicalized. However, if focalized, the order anterior tense>repetitive remains unchanged. If changed, the sentence will be ungrammatical. This is illustrated in (55.b) and (56.c) below:

(56) a) m?ìn t?Ìt mbiìt n??ì paìj?ì

child Ant. Rep. eat. food

«The child has already eaten food again»

b) aì t?Ìt mbiìt n??ì m?ìn paìj?ì

Cl. Ant. Rep. eat child food

«The child has ALREADY eaten food AGAIN»

c) *aì piÌt t?Ìt n??ì m?ìn paìj?ì

Cl. Rep. Ant. eat child food

Intended: «The child has ALREADY eaten food AGAIN»

The data above show that the anterior tense adverb always precedes the repetitive adverb in both the unmarked and the marked forms.

2.10.4. Progressive>durative

The order progressive>durative, as shown in chapter four, is irreversible. In other words, putting the durative aspect «?k?ì» (still) before the progressive aspect «ti?ì» (progressive) renders the sentence ungrammatical. This is shown in the data below:

(57) a) m?ìn ti?ì ?k?ì ndié

child Prog. Dur. sleeps

«The child is still sleeping»

b) *m?ìn ?k?ì ti?ì die

child Dur. Prog. sleeps

Intended: «The child is still sleeping»

Both the durative aspect and the progressive aspect adverbs cannot be topicalized. As far as focalization is concerned, the order remains the same. In fact, the progressive aspect still precedes the durative aspect. The contrary renders the sentence ungrammatical,as illustrated in the data in (58) below:

(58) a) m?ìn ti?ì ?k?ì ndié

child Prog. Dur. sleeps

«The child is still sleeping»

b) aì ti?ì ?k?ì ndié m?ìn

Cl. Prog. Dur. sleeps child

«The child IS STILL SLEEPING»

c) *aì ?k?ì ti?ì ndié m?ìn

Cl. Dur. Prog. sleeps child

«The child IS STILL SLEEPING»

Like in the previous case, the data in (58) above show that the progressive aspect always precedes the durative aspect, be it in the marked or the unmarked forms.

2.10.5. Progressive>repetitive

In the unmarked form, the progressive aspect precedes the repetitive aspect adverb. The reverse is ungrammatical, as shown in (59) below:

(59) a) m?ìn ti?ì mbiÌt ndié

child Prog. Rep. sleeps

«The child is still sleeping»

b) *m?ìn piÌt ti?ì ndié

child Rep. Prog. sleeps

Intended: «The child is still sleeping»

As mentioned above, both the progressive and the repetitive aspect adverbs cannot be topicalized. As for focalization, the order progressive>repetitive remains unchanged.

In fact, «ti?ì» (progressive) still precedes «piÌt/ÌmbiÌt» (repetitive). This is illustrated in (60) below:

(60) a) m?ìn ti?ì mbiÌt ndié

child Prog. Rep. sleeps

«The child is still sleeping»

b) aì ti?ì mbiÌt ndié m?ìn

Cl. Prog. Rep. sleeps child

«The child IS STILL SLEEPING»

c) *aì piÌt ti?ì ndié m?ìn

Cl. Rep. Prog. sleeps child

Intended: «The child IS STILL SLEEPING»

All the data above show that the orders anterior tense>repetitive, progressive>durative, and progressive>repetitive remain unchanged both in the unmarked and the marked forms. That is, the order between the aspectual adverbs is not reversible.

2.10.6. Exocomparative>manner

In the unmarked order, the exocomparative adverb precedes the manner adverb. The reverse is not possible, as shown in (61) below:

(61) a) jiì léraÌ? naì ndét lér?ÌwaÌ ndu?niì poìkériì

Dem. teacher Aff. teach lesson differently well

«This teacher teaches differently well»

b) * jiì léraÌ? naì ndét lér?ÌwaÌ poìkériì ndu?niì

Dem. teacher Aff. teach lesson well differently

Intended: «This teacher teaches differently well»

If topicalized or focalized, the manner adverb precedes the exocomparative. This is illustrated in (62.b) below for focalization, and (62.c) for topicalization.

(62) a) jiì léraÌ? naì ndét lér?ÌwaÌ ndu?niì poìkériì

Dem. teacher Aff. teach lesson differently well

«This teacher teaches differently well»

b) aì poìkériì mb?Ì kaì jiì léraÌ? ndét lér?ÌwaÌ ndu?niì n?ì

Cl. well is how Dem. teacher teach lesson differently Decl.

«It is WELL that this teacher teaches differently»

c) poìkériì-n?ì, jiì léraÌ? naì ndét lér?ÌwaÌ ndu?niì

well-Top Dem. teacher Aff. teach lesson differently

«Well, this teacher teaches differently»

In (62.b) above, the manner adverb «poìkériì» (well) has been focalized and fronted, thus, precedes the exocomparative adverb «ndu?niì» (differently). In (62.c), the manner adverb has been topicalized and precedes the exocomparative adverb. So, with focalization and topicalization, one moves from the order exocomparative>manner to manner>exocomparative. However, it should be mentioned that these structures, though being grammatical, are rarely used in the discourse.

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