CLS Speaker Series - Deborah C. Morton (Penn State University) An Overview of the Structure of Gisida Anii
Jan 15, 2016
from 09:00 AM to 10:30 AM
|Where||127 Moore Building|
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An Overview of the Structure of Gisida Anii
The Niger-Congo language family is the largest in the world with reference to number of languages. Many of those languages, however, particularly non-Bantu ones, are not well-known to linguists. The Anii language is a member of the Kwa sub-family of Niger-Congo, and is spoken by approximately 50,000 speakers in Togo and Benin, West Africa. This talk will provide an overview of the structure of the Gisida dialect of Anii with an emphasis on the ways that Anii is typologically different from many more well-known languages (in particular, Indo-European ones).
Topics to be covered include the noun-class system, some aspects of tense and aspect marking (or the lack thereof!), the lexical and grammatical function of tone, and some morphologically interesting word-compounding processes. Some unusual phonological phenomena will also be discussed, including a very strong system of vowel harmony based on the feature [ATR] (Advanced Tongue Root), and some unique syllable structures (i.e. when vowels do not act like vowels).