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Vol. 37, no. 4 (Winter 1995)


Contents

Articles

A Pidgin Verbal System: The Case of Juba Arabic Mauro Tosco 423
Women, Men, and Conversational Narrative Performances: Aspects of Gender in Greek Storytelling Alexandra Georgakopoulou 460
The Daily Ritual of Greeting among the Baatombu of Benin Wendy Schottman 487
Maldivian Prototypical Passives and Related Constructions Bruce D. Cain 524
The Coding of Linguistic Ideology in Arvanítika (Albanian) Language Shift: Congruent and Contradictory Discourse Lukas D. Tsitsipis 541

Review Essay

Linguistics, Anthropology and Philosophy in the French Enlightenment (Ulrich Ricken) Hans Aarsleff 578

Book Reviews

Language Contact and Change in the Austronesian World (Tom Dutton and Darrell T. Tryon, editors) Joseph Errington 586
Writing without Words: Alternative Literacies in Mesoamerica and the Andes (Elizabeth Hill Boone and Walter D. Mignolo, editors) Scott O'Mack 588
American Indian English (William L. Leap) Bernard Spolsky 590
The World on Paper: The Conceptual and Cognitive Implications of Writing and Reading (David R. Olson) Willard Walker 592
Multilingualism and Nation Building (Gerda Mansour)Philip Baker 594
A Lega and English Dictionary (Robert Botne) David Odden 597
Speaking for the Chief: Okyeame and the Politics of Akan Royal Oratory (Kwesi Yankah) Samuel Gyasi Obeng 599
Empire of Words: The Reign of the OED (John Willinsky) Thomas J. Creswell 600
Linguistic Theories of Humor (Salvatore Attardo) Amy Carrell 602

Publications Received 604

Abstracts

A Pidgin Verbal System: The Case of Juba Arabic

Mauro Tosco
Istituto Universitario Orientale, Naples

Abstract. The paper describes the verbal system of Juba Arabic (JA), an Arabic-based (stabilized) pidgin spoken in southern Sudan. JA shows many characteristics of typical creoles, including the expression of different tense / mood / aspect values through preverbal markers, and the division of the verbal lexicon between stative and nonstative verbs, which are distinguished by verbal markers and the different value of the verbal form when used without markers. As expected, nonstative verbs have punctual meaning when used without markers. It is argued that, both on syntactic and semantic grounds, core and noncore verbal markers must be distinguished in JA. Core markers are the nonpunctual ge and the irrealis bi, which, unlike the case in most creoles, cannot combine with each other. Other peculiarities of JA are the marking of habitual actions by either ge or bi, according to their ± realis character, and the lack of a core tense marker. Anteriority of an action is expressed by the noncore marker kan, while other noncore markers give such values as inchoative, resultative, etc. The last section compares JA with both Ki-Nubi (KN), an Arabic-based creole spoken in eastern Africa, and Sudanese Colloquial Arabic. While JA and KN share a common lexifier and substrata, as well as the same historical origin in the second half of the nineteenth century, it is argued that JA is moving more and more apart from KN, as a result of the ongoing and ever-growing influence of Sudanese Colloquial Arabic, as well as the ensuing de-pidginization of JA.

Women, Men, and Conversational Narrative Performances: Aspects of Gender in Greek Storytelling

Alexandra Georgakopoulou
King's College, University of London

Abstract. Everyday talk has long been explored as reflective and constitutive of gender meanings. Drawing on the frameworks of ethnographically oriented discourse analysis and interactional sociolinguistics, this paper focuses on Greek conversational storytelling with the aim of exploring systematic differences between women and men in the construction of narrative worlds. It is argued that Greek narrative discourse style is based on a closed set of performance devices that, though drawn upon equally by both gender groups, act as contextualization cues for the storytellers gender identity. This is mainly evidenced in instances of speech animation that give rise to gender-shaped participation frameworks. These are an integral part of the narrators unmarked self-presentation styles. Women's stories mainly involve self-depreciation, while men's stories display adversativeness and competitiveness. The discussion shows how storytellers strategically employ them to achieve various interactional purposes within conversational contexts. It thus sheds light on the ways in which Greek narrators restructure participatory alignments and negotiate interactional positionings by invoking gender-based values, roles, and stereotypes.

The Daily Ritual of Greeting among the Baatombu of Benin

Wendy Schottman
Aubière, France

Abstract. Greeting litanies composed of two asymmetrical roles, with one person declining a series of inquires and the other supplying the standard replies, are frequent in Africa. This study of the elaborate greeting ritual of the Baatombu examines aspects of the social structure and cultural values reflected in the routine that could explain why the Baatombu reserve the verbally active role for the person of superior status, whereas other societies allot that role to one of inferior status. Some often-neglected nonverbal aspects of greeting are included and their importance in analyzing status display, routine structure, and manipulation are shown.

Maldivian Prototypical Passives and Related Constructions

Bruce D. Cain
Cornell University

Abstract. Maldivian (Dhivehi), like Sinhala, features a derivational process whereby active/volitive verbs are related to inactive/involitive verbs (IN-verbs). These IN-verbs occur in three different constructions in both languages: involitive, accidental, and inactive. Only in Dhivehi, however, do the IN-verbs also occur in prototypical passive constructions. This situation suggests a strong relationship between these constructions and the passive, which can be accounted for by adopting a prototypical approach to the passive, whose primary pragmatic function would be agent defocusing. Such IN-constructions, which can be regarded as "passive-related," differ in various degrees from the prototypical passive.

The Coding of Linguistic Ideology in Arvanítika (Albanian) Language Shift: Congruent and Contradictory Discourse

Lukas D. Tsitsipis
Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

Abstract. Arvanítika, a dialect of Tosk Albanian spoken in Greece, is now undergoing attrition. The process of the gradual replacement of Arvanítika by Greek can be viewed best in the context of political economy of language, in which issues of ideology figure prominently. The relationship between Greek and Arvanítika is one of subordination where a social agent is subjected to the decisions of another. This outcome is apparent in the hegemony that the official national Greek discourse has exercised on the ideological consciousness of the Greek-Arvanítika bilingual speakers who have, thus, undergone the process of self-deprecation. At the heart of this process is the acceptance of Greek as the power code by Arvanítika speakers. Self-deprecation often gives rise to congruent ideological discourse concerning language. In congruent discourse the power (Greek) and the solidarity (Arvanítika) codes are represented in speakers narratives and other instances of natural speech as being in noncontradictory relationship. On the other hand, modernization, economic development, and the advent of urbanization have caused the emergence of contradictory ideological discourse, in which the two languages become parts of heteroglossia. In speakers narratives and other naturally produced speech segments tension appears between the merits of tradition and those of modern life as indexed through their respective linguistic affiliations.

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