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The (non-)grammaticalization of possession in Guatemalan Spanish

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Abstract

My study focuses on Guatemalan Spanish and discusses a distinctive morphosyntactic property of it: the possibility of combining a prenominal weak possessive with a, usually indefinite, determiner (as in <i>una mi hermana</i>). On the basis of an empirical evaluation of spontaneous speech data, extracted from the Preseea-Guatemala corpus, I consider the distributional properties of this phenomenon and interpret the results against the background of current grammaticalization theory. In particular, I argue that an indefinitely marked DP can impede the grammaticalization of the possessive adjective.

References

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