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Reported speech in Ungarinyin: grammar and social cognition in a language of the Kimberley region, Western Australia

Spronck, Stef

Description

This thesis examines a polysemous construction in the North Western Australian language Ungarinyin (Non-Pama Nyungan, Worrorran) that can express reported speech (x says p), reported thought (x thinks p) and reported intentionality (x wants p). Following Rumsey (1982) and McGregor (1994) it refers to this construction as the ‘framing construction’ and details its functions, specific forms, the discourse contexts in which it occurs and alternative expressions the construction alternates...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorSpronck, Stef
dc.date.accessioned2016-02-12T03:37:20Z
dc.date.available2016-02-12T03:37:20Z
dc.identifier.otherb37881796
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/733712596
dc.description.abstractThis thesis examines a polysemous construction in the North Western Australian language Ungarinyin (Non-Pama Nyungan, Worrorran) that can express reported speech (x says p), reported thought (x thinks p) and reported intentionality (x wants p). Following Rumsey (1982) and McGregor (1994) it refers to this construction as the ‘framing construction’ and details its functions, specific forms, the discourse contexts in which it occurs and alternative expressions the construction alternates with. The analysis reveals how the expression of perspective interacts with key areas of Ungarinyin grammar. In doing so, this study aims to contribute to understanding the ways in which central aspects of sociality, like perspective taking and intention attribution can shape grammar, and to present desiderata for a linguistic theory of social cognition. After an introductory chapter introducing the Ungarinyin framing construction, a background and methodology, chapter 2 lays out the fundamentals of Ungarinyin grammar. The chapter describes the language as a non-configurational, head-marking language with a limited set of relational and locational case suffixes and an extensive verbal inflectional template. Most verbal constructions consist of combinations of a verbal particle (a coverb) and an inflecting verb. Like in other Australian languages the use of complex clause constructions is limited and word order is often variable. Chapter 3 contextualises the study within the literature on reported speech and looks at the functions of the Ungarinyin framing construction in detail (reported speech, thought, intentionality, causation-intention and naming). The chapter concludes that although there are prototypical construction types for each of these functions none of them unambiguously identifies a particular meaning. Chapter 4 introduces the notion of ‘defenestration’, viz. signalling the functions of a framing construction without a framing construction, and demonstrates that this can be achieved alternatively by elements in the clause immediately preceding the defenestrated expression or by elements within the defenestrated expression itself. The chapter presents the main alternative devices and strategies for signalling perspective in Ungarinyin and examines their distribution within and outside contexts of reported speech. Chapter 5 returns to the topic of framing constructions in a narrower sense and addresses their discourse properties. The chapter finds that the distribution of framing constructions in (narrative) discourse is far from random and that this aspect can serve to distinguish their respective functions. It also concludes that the discourse referential properties of framing constructions differ considerably from regular, non-attributed discourse and that this is connected to the ability of framing constructions to simultaneously express multiple perspectives. Chapter 6 dives further into the topic of multiple perspective by focusing on a specific type of framing construction that explicitly reflects the perspective of the current speaker and that of the speaker whose speech/thought is expressed in the framing construction. Chapter 7, finally, summarises the findings and arguments and considers some of the implications of the study for analysing the grammar of social cognition.
dc.language.isoen
dc.subjectAustralian Aboriginal languages
dc.subjectUngarinyin
dc.subjectreported speech and thought
dc.titleReported speech in Ungarinyin: grammar and social cognition in a language of the Kimberley region, Western Australia
dc.typeThesis (PhD)
local.contributor.supervisorEvans, Nicholas
local.contributor.supervisorcontactnicholas.evans@anu.edu.au
dcterms.valid2016
local.description.notesDeposited by author 11/2/16.
local.type.degreeDoctor of Philosophy (PhD)
dc.date.issued2015
local.contributor.affiliationCollege of Asia and the Pacific, The Australian National University
local.identifier.doi10.25911/5d6c394b1bc12
local.mintdoimint
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