Skype talk on “The grammaticalization of TAM markers in Mafa “

Joseph Lovestrand has sent the following invitation to another Skype Talk:

The Chadic Languages & Cultures group, run by Cameroonian linguists, is meeting online Saturday 7 August, 9 AM, Cameroon time (UTC+1). All are welcome to join the discussion (in French and English)!

Chadic Languages & Cultures
Saturday, 29 May, 2021
9 AM (Cameroon time, UTC+1)
Join via Skype:

Séraphine Dougophe
Université de Yaoundé 1

The grammaticalization of TAM markers in Mafa

The presentation considers the grammaticalization of tense, aspect and mood markers in Mafa with a focus on markers whose origin could be traced back and provides valuable information on the state of evolution of grammatical categories in the language. Most Mafa TAM markers (future, completive, intentional, habitual, subjunctive) derive from movement verbs, but there are others who originated from preposition (pp-periphrasis for the progressive) and adverb (iterative). While some grams are still in the early stage of grammaticalization marked by formal similarity to their source and their orientation with regard to speech participants (speaker-oriented versus agent-oriented), others are in an advanced stage of grammaticalization as illustrated by the phonological and morphological reduction they seemingly underwent.

La présentation examine la grammaticalisation des marqueurs de temps, d’aspect et de mode en Mafa en mettant l’accent sur les marqueurs dont l’origine a pu être retracée et fournit des informations précieuses sur l’état d’évolution des catégories grammaticales dans la langue. La plupart des marqueurs de TAM en Mafa (futur, complétif, intentionnel, habituel, subjonctif) dérivent des verbes de mouvement, mais il y en a d’autres qui ont pour origine une préposition (périphrase du syntagme prépositionnel pour le progressif) et l’adverbe (itératif). Alors que certaines grams sont encore au stade précoce de la grammaticalisation marquée par la similarité formelle avec leur source et leur orientation par rapport aux participants au discours (orienté vers le locuteur ou vers l’agent), d’autres sont à un stade avancé de la grammaticalisation comme l’illustre la réduction phonologique et morphologique qu’elles ont apparemment subie.


Chadic languages on SIL Cameroon Website

SIL Cameroon has a website where — besides other information — one can find details about their latest publications on languages spoken in Cameroon, including many Chadic languages: Baldamu, Bana, Buduma, Buwal, Cuvok, Daba, Dugwor, Gabri, Gavar, Gude, Hdi, Jimi, Kera, Lagwan, Mafa, Mbedam, Mbuko, Mefele, Merey, Mina, Mofu-Gudur, Moloko, Mpade, Muyang, Ouldeme, Podoko, Sharwa, Tsuvan, Vame, and Zulgo.

In order to find this information, you can use an index sorted by language family, province and name, either in English or in French. Information is available on alternate names, SIL code, ALCAM number and name, dialects and population figures.

Many of the listed publications are available as PDF or HTML files. In order to get the special characters right, you need to have the Cam Cam SILDoulosL font installed on your computer. You can download this font in their Resources and links section.

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