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Verbal Semantics in a Tibeto-Burman Language

The Bodo Verb

Series:

Prafulla Basumatary

The aim of this book is to provide a comprehensive description of the verbal system of Bodo, a Tibeto-Burman language spoken in Northeast India, particularly Assam. The description is primarily based on a 1.2-million-word Bodo corpus, both written and spoken, involving different genres.

This is the first extensive work solely devoted to the description of the Bodo verb. The book provides a thorough description of the Bodo verb that will be comprehensive enough to be of use to Tibeto-Burmanists, on the one hand, and to language typologists, on the other. Second, it addresses certain pedagogic issues relating to the teaching of the Bodo language in schools.

The book encompasses a description of verbal roots, formation of verbal stems, inflection of verbal stems, and distribution of various verb forms in different types of clauses, such as independent clauses, embedded clauses, and chained clauses. Finally, a pedagogic perspective is provided with reference to the morphosyntactic aspects of the Bodo verb.

This book was the winner of the 2016 Peter Lang Young Scholars Competition in Linguistics.

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Chapter 1: Language and People

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CHAPTER 1

Language and People

This book provides a comprehensive description of the verb in Bodo, a Tibeto-Burman language spoken mainly in Assam in Northeast India. The purpose of the book is twofold. First, it aims to provide a good description of the Bodo verb that will be comprehensive enough to be of use to Tibeto-Burmanists on the one hand and to language typologists on the other. Secondly, taking the Bodo verb as a connecting point, this book addresses in passing certain pedagogic issues relating to the teaching of the Bodo language at school.

The majority of this study has been devoted to the description of the verb. It encompasses a description of verbal roots, the formation of verbal stems, the ‘inflection’ of verbal stems, and the distribution of various verb forms in different types of clause, such as independent clauses, embedded clauses, and chained clauses. With respect to verbal roots, I have tried to elaborate on their various inherent properties, such as their phonological shape and the property of transitivity.

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