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By by Mark T. Miller.

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Extra resources for A grammar of West Coast Bajau

Sample text

To the south lies Kalimantan, the Indonesian portion of the island. To the northeast, across the Sulu Sea, lies the Philippines. 1 below. 1 The Sama-Bajaw: languages and origins The West Coast (WC) Bajau of Sabah belong to a cluster of peoples related linguistically and culturally. 1 The Bajaw peoples most commonly refer to themselves as ‘Sama’; their total numbers have been estimated at 750,000 to 900,000 (Sather 1997:2, 5). The composite term ‘Sama-Bajaw’ has been used by linguists to refer collectively to these peoples and their languages.

However, I give more attention to WC Bajau’s ‘symmetrical’ voice system and how derivational affixation in the language functions within the voice system. While I do not delve deeply into theoretical issues, I have sometimes found it useful to draw upon the insights of Role and Reference Grammar (RRG), the most thorough treatment of which can be found in Van Valin and LaPolla (1997). The concept of semantic macroroles (‘actor’ and ‘undergoer’), which is foundational to RRG, is used extensively used in this grammar.

Chapter 4 presents the word classes of WC Bajau, including the morphosyntactic evidence for distinguishing between the major classes (nouns and verbs) and for not distinguishing a distinct class of adjectives in the language. The chapter concludes by describing several minor word classes: prepositions, numerals, quantifiers, demonstratives, adverbs, and interjections. Chapter 5 establishes some foundational syntactic categories like ‘subject’, ‘voice’, and ‘direct core argument’, with some treatment of how the notions ‘subject’ and ‘voice’ have been debated in the analysis of Philippine-type languages.

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