Edited By Jacek Witkos and Sylwester Jaworski
A Rare Type of Reflexive Use in Slavonic Languages
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University of Lyon 2
Traditionally the term ‘reflexive’ is used with two different senses. One refers to the function which co-refers subject and object (or AGENT and PATIENT). The second denotes a form, i.e. a morphological marker of co-referentiality. In the litterature, the term ‘reflexive’ covers a range of different forms and functions which became the object of different crosslinguistic investigations. Faltz (1985), Geniušienė (1987), Kemmer (1993), among others, discuss this issue in detail providing some classificatory system of different morphological forms and distinguishing the most frequent functions of these forms. Due to the wide scope of the reflexive term, different definitions are provided. To avoid terminological ambiguity, we will use it with reference to a morphological form that encodes the coreferential relation between the subject and object argument. Obviously, some other criteria may be taken into account to define a reflexive form such as specific syntactic or binding properties.
Scholars working on reflexivity often raise the question on the categorical status of the reflexive marker. Concerning the Slavonic languages, Geniušienė (1987) and Kemmer (1993) treat the affixes (-sja in Russian) and clitics (se in Czech; się in Polish, etc.) as morphological reflexive particles that underwent the process of grammaticalization. Even if some strong indications exist in favour of the analysis according to which the Slavonic reflexive particles have already lost their pronominal status, some linguists still consider these morphemes as pronouns or anaphors (cf. Abraham...
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