The Weekly Newsletter of MIT Linguistics

Syntax Square 3/21 - Juan Cancel (MIT)

Speaker: Juan Cancel (MIT)
Title: The suffix -γi in Central Alaskan Yupik: Antipassive and Applicative Marker, or just an Applicative Marker
Time: Tuesday, March 21st, 1pm – 2pm

Abstract: For my undergrad thesis, I looked at -γi, a valency-changing suffix in Central Alaskan Yupik (CAY) with adversative/malefactive qualities. When the suffix appears in ergative-aligned transitive verbs, -γi is the most productive marker of the antipassive, but when it appears in accusative-aligned transitive verbs, -γi marks the applicative, adding a new argument with absolutive case. In addition to this, when it appears in intransitive verbs, -γi still marks the applicative, but the newly added argument appears with ergative case. Although most of the literature has subsumed -γi as functioning both as an antipassive and an applicative marker, I argued that -γi is just an applicative marker and that its antipassive use is the result of zero -derivation, another valency-changing operation in CAY.