Nominalization instead of modification

MyBook is a cheap paperback edition of the original book and will be sold at uniform, low price.
This Chapter is currently unavailable for purchase.

In Dënesųłıné, an underdocumented indigenous language of Canada, the nominalization of full, finite clauses is highly productive. As a contribution to language description as well as to the study of nominalization, I show many examples of this construction, and give evidence that they are indeed nominalizations. I also show that these nominalizations are used instead of attributive modification of a noun, i.e. instead of adjectives and relative clauses. This fact turns out to be theoretically highly significant, because, as I argue, it is a strong piece of evidence that nouns in Dënesųłıné are inherently entities (type 〈e〉). Based on Chierchia’s (1998) nominal mapping parameter, I develop a typology where nouns in some languages are mapped to type 〈e〉 and, unlike better-known type 〈e〉 languages such as Mandarin, remain of that type throughout the derivation, without ever shifting to the predicative type, 〈e,t〉. I speculate on reasons for the emergence of this kind of language, and based on Dënesųłıné, develop its major characteristics.


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address