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Yet More on the Position of the Languages of Eastern Indonesia and East Timor

Yet More on the Position of the Languages of Eastern Indonesia and East Timor Abstract: The line dividing the Austronesian languages into Western Malayo-Polynesian (WMP) and Central-Eastern Malayo-Polynesian (CEMP) is drawn east of Sulawesi and through the middle of Sumbawa. A number of phonological or semantic changes are claimed as forming the basis of this distinction, as well as the typological profile of the languages to the east being different from those to the west, and a number of lexical items being attested only east of the line. We examine the phonological and semantic innovations, as well as the erratic morphological ones, showing that none of them define the CEMP line, but indicate that (a) the Central Malayo-Polynesian (CMP)–area languages do not convincingly meet the criteria commonly accepted for a subgroup or even a linkage, (b) some of the WMP-area languages exhibit more of the same features found in at least some of the CMP-area languages than do others, and (c) many of the traits ascribed to the CMP- or CEMP-area languages can be found in more conservative WMP-area or Formosan languages as well. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Oceanic Linguistics University of Hawai'I Press

Yet More on the Position of the Languages of Eastern Indonesia and East Timor

Oceanic Linguistics , Volume 47 (1) – Jul 23, 2008

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 University of Hawai'i Press
ISSN
1527-9421
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Abstract

Abstract: The line dividing the Austronesian languages into Western Malayo-Polynesian (WMP) and Central-Eastern Malayo-Polynesian (CEMP) is drawn east of Sulawesi and through the middle of Sumbawa. A number of phonological or semantic changes are claimed as forming the basis of this distinction, as well as the typological profile of the languages to the east being different from those to the west, and a number of lexical items being attested only east of the line. We examine the phonological and semantic innovations, as well as the erratic morphological ones, showing that none of them define the CEMP line, but indicate that (a) the Central Malayo-Polynesian (CMP)–area languages do not convincingly meet the criteria commonly accepted for a subgroup or even a linkage, (b) some of the WMP-area languages exhibit more of the same features found in at least some of the CMP-area languages than do others, and (c) many of the traits ascribed to the CMP- or CEMP-area languages can be found in more conservative WMP-area or Formosan languages as well.

Journal

Oceanic LinguisticsUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Jul 23, 2008

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