Person Property ( Concept )

      |_ Abstract
            |_ Linguistic Property
                  |_ Morphosyntactic Property
                        |_ Person Property

Direct SubConcepts:

FirstPerson  SecondPerson  ThirdPerson  ThirdPersonObviative  ThirdPersonProximative  FirstPersonExclusive  FirstPersonInclusive  


PersonProperty is the class of properties with a deictic dimension, interpreted relative to the speaker, encoding the participants in a speech situation. Usually a three-way contrast is found: firstPerson (speaker), secondPerson (addressee), and thirdPerson (neither speaker nor addressee). Other distinctions within this feature include: inclusive/exclusive and proximative/obviative. [Crystal 1997: 285-286]

See Also:
Surrey Morphology Group - Person

Usage Notes
2009-06-04 13:28:06

Often, the paradigm of person marking is analyzed as one collapsed dimension, treating person and number together. Some linguists, however, do not give the combination person-number special status, but treat person as an individual attribute, separate from number. [Cysouw 2003, 101 ft. 2; Jespersen 1924, 212-215; Lyons 1977, 636-646; Lyons 1968, 276-281; Croft 1990, 145-150]\\nAccording to this view, the paradigm of person includes: 1) 'speaker' 2) 'addressee' 3) 'other' (non-participant) and based on these distinctions, groups of participants can be formed. Groups of participants consist of more than one participant and are thus necessarily semantically plural. The biggest analytical problem arises when the speaker (1) is involved in the participant group. The most common distinction within the range of possibilities is first person inclusive which is understood as speaker and addressee (1+2). Under such a system the first person exclusive is understood as including the speaker but excluding the addressee. Other possible combinations of participants may involve the issue of how one interprets number marking for such groups. Furthermore, number values can additionally impose restrictions ('two', 'three', 'small number') on the number of participants in the groups, and in this way the number paradigm can cross-cut the person paradigm. [Corbett 2000, 64-66, 83-87]\\nCrosslinguistically, there are many different patterns of syncretism between the values of the full person paradigm, especially when considered jointly with the cross-cutting number paradigm. [Cysouw 2003; Siewierska 2004; Baerman_etal 2005]\\nNo grammatical form has been attested for the following (although the uses are attested): a) 1+1 ('choral we') b) 2+2 ('only present audience').\\nA note on terminology: It is worth considering the possibility that the inclusive/exclusive - proximative/obviative and other distinctions could be treated as separate concepts which intersect with person marking. For example the proximative/obviative distinction is about the degree of remoteness from the speaker when talking about non-participants. Equally, the inclusive/exclusive distinction is about inclusion of the addressee, a participant which is proximate to the speaker. Furthermore, the terms inclusive and exclusive have been used in relation to the second person in Abkhaz (abk) where there is a distinction between 'you-excluding-them' and 'you-including-them'. [Cysouw 2003, 75; Crystal 1997, 285]\\nGiven the standard definition of inclusive/exclusive as either involving the addressee or not, the extension of this concept to the second person would involve a logical contradiction. However, there is another possibility, namely that there is a general concept involving degree of remoteness relative to a speech act participant. The firstPersonInclusive/firstPersonExclusive could be understood as the intersection of the firstPerson with this generalized concept. Examples of the type found in Abkhaz (abk) could be understood as the intersection of the secondPerson and this general concept. And finally, the proximative/obviative could be understood as the intersection of the thirdPerson with this general concept.



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