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Comparing APPLs and Oranges: The Syntax of Shona Applicatives
Heather Bliss
100-109 (complete paper or proceedings contents)


In Shona, applicatives increase the valency of the verb by introducing an applied object. This paper demonstrates that locative applied objects behave differently than other thematic categories of applied objects with respect to word order, c-command, and their behavior in causative constructions. These differences are accounted for in terms of case theory. Both direct and applied objects are analyzed as eligible goals for accusative case checking. Locative applied objects exhibit different syntactic behavior because they are assigned lexical case from the locative noun class prefix, and as such are ineligible to check accusative case. The analysis proposed has implications for how Shona fits within the cross-Bantu typology of symmetrical and asymmetrical languages.

Published in

Selected Proceedings of the 39th Annual Conference on African Linguistics: Linguistic Research and Languages in Africa
edited by Akinloye Ojo and Lioba Moshi
Table of contents
Printed edition: $270.00