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6. Mundari reciprocals

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Abstract

This paper investigates the semantics of reciprocal constructions in Mundari, an Austro-Asiatic language of northern India. Two grammatical constructions express reciprocity: a basic construction, which infixes <pV> to verb roots, and a serialised construction adding -idi ‘take’ to the basic reciprocal. The reciprocal construction is limited to subject-object coreference and cannot be fed by affixal derivational processes like applicatives or causatives, though it can be fed by zero conversion from other word classes; it may itself feed the causative. From a semantic perspective, the most unusual feature of Mundari reciprocals is the existence of a specialised construction for expressing sequential chaining situations, namely the serialised construction with -idi ‘take’; the basic reciprocal construction is not acceptable for sequential chaining situations.

References

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