MULL-Lab, 11/02 – Willie Myers

MULL-Lab will be meeting Tuesday, November 2 at 4:30pm.  Willie Myers will give a talk titled High, Low, and No Absolutive Mayan Syntax: Effects of No Object Raising in Heritage Mam.  An abstract for the talk is below.  If you would like to attend but haven’t registered for MULL-Lab, you can do so here.
Abstract: Coon et al. (2014) propose that absolutive morphemes come from two different sources in Mayan languages: finite Infl in HIGH-ABS languages like Mam, and v in LOW-ABS languages like Cho’l. As a result, the languages also differ in a variety of properties related to syntactic ergativity. This talk brings in new data from a heritage speaker of Mam which does not demonstrate any of the expected HIGH-ABS properties in transitive clauses. I argue that this variation is a consequence of an underlying lack of object raising and that the heritage Mam requires a new option for parametrization – NO-ABS – in which absolutive morphemes are never licensed in transitive clauses. I show that NO-ABS Mam patterns with LOW-ABS languages in the parameter, supporting Coon et al.’s (2021) claim that object raising is the source of HIGH-ABS syntax and providing additional evidence for the role of the transitive object in creating syntactic ergativity in Mayan.

Comments are closed.

Blog authors are solely responsible for the content of the blogs listed in the directory. Neither the content of these blogs, nor the links to other web sites, are screened, approved, reviewed or endorsed by McGill University. The text and other material on these blogs are the opinion of the specific author and are not statements of advice, opinion, or information of McGill.