The Mauritian Creole determiner system: A historical overview

Guillemin, Diana (2009). The Mauritian Creole determiner system: A historical overview. In Enoch O. Aboh and Norval Smith (Ed.), Complex processes in new languages (pp. 173-200) Amsterdam, The Netherlands: John Benjamins.

Author Guillemin, Diana
Title of chapter The Mauritian Creole determiner system: A historical overview
Title of book Complex processes in new languages
Place of Publication Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Publisher John Benjamins
Publication Year 2009
Sub-type Research book chapter (original research)
Series Creole Language Library (CLL)
ISBN 9789027252579
Editor Enoch O. Aboh
Norval Smith
Volume number 35
Chapter number 8
Start page 173
End page 200
Total pages 28
Total chapters 16
Collection year 2010
Language eng
Subjects 200406 Language in Time and Space (incl. Historical Linguistics, Dialectology)
200408 Linguistic Structures (incl. Grammar, Phonology, Lexicon, Semantics)
Formatted Abstract/Summary
The process of article incorporation early in the genesis of Mauritian Creole (MC) resulted in the occurrence of a bare nouns in argument positions with ambiguous interpretations between (in)definite, singular, plural or generic. A new determiner system gradually emerged, but MC continues to admit bare nouns in argument positions. This paper argues that the process of article incorporation triggered a shift in noun denotation from predicative in French to argumental in MC. Like English bare plurals, MC nouns are argumental kind denoting terms that do not require a determiner in argument positions. The MC singular indefinite article enn and the plural marker bann serve to derive instances of kinds. The differential behaviour of MC count and mass nouns is attributed to the number feature which must be checked for count nouns, and provides evidence for a phonologically null definite determiner which is licensed in subject position by the specificity marker la.
Keyword Creole languages
Language contact
Q-Index Code B1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code

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Created: Sat, 16 Jan 2010, 09:55:07 EST by Diana Guillemin on behalf of School of Communication and Arts