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Re: Gender in First Person Singular

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  • Logan Kearsley
    On 1 May 2012 14:29, Matthew Boutilier wrote: [...] ... I don t see as how it would be any *more* confusing than learning different
    Message 1 of 59 , May 1, 2012
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      On 1 May 2012 14:29, Matthew Boutilier <bvticvlarivs@...> wrote:
      [...]
      > so *nobody* knows of natlangs that have, say, multiple 1st-person
      > *pronouns*for multiple genders? i assume that would be confusing as
      > hell for children
      > to learn. doesn't japanese do something like this?

      I don't see as how it would be any *more* confusing than learning
      different gendered forms of predicate adjectives/participles in the
      first person, and children learn that just fine. Actually, it seems to
      me it wouldn't even be a significant addition to the problem of
      learning personal pronouns in general; one of my nephews for quite
      some time had figured out "you" to be his name, "I" and "he" to be
      generic third-person pronouns, and "she" to mean "mom". Since he
      managed to get "I" vs. "you" and "he" vs. "she" all figured out, I
      doubt I-masc. vs. I-fem. would've been more trouble.

      Others' responses about Thai, Tocharian, and Japanese do make me feel
      better about the natlanginess of Mev Pailom's first-person pronouns,
      though.

      -l.
    • Jim Henry
      ... Logan has just reminded me offlist. So here it is. The phonology was very simple: /p t k f s m n i u a/, with moderately restrictive phonotactics. The
      Message 59 of 59 , May 18, 2012
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        On Thu, May 3, 2012 at 3:39 PM, Jim Henry <jimhenry1973@...> wrote:
        > On 5/3/12, Logan Kearsley <chronosurfer@...> wrote:
        >> On 1 May 2012 17:22, Jim Henry <jimhenry1973@...> wrote:
        >>> On 5/1/12, Daniel Bowman <danny.c.bowman@...> wrote:
        >>>> In a broader sense, are there any languages (con-or natural) that do
        >>>> this?
        >>>
        >>> One of my sketchy artlangs marked gender pervasively on verbs and in
        >>> first and second person pronouns as well as third-person.  Several
        >>> verbs had suppletive forms for different genders, too, e.g. "to
        >>> dance", "to speak" and some others.
        >
        >> Do you happen to have any documentation for that sketch?
        >
        > It's all on paper.  Remind me again in a couple of weeks and I'll try
        > to find it and type it up.

        Logan has just reminded me offlist. So here it is.

        The phonology was very simple: /p t k f s m n i u a/, with moderately
        restrictive phonotactics. The allowed medial clusters aren't clearly
        delimited, but there are no initial or final clusters. Stress is on
        the first syllable.

        It's SVO, with no case marking. Questions are marked with a
        clause-initial particle.

        I was misremembering some features of the gender marking. Not all
        verbs are marked for gender of the subject, but the verbs that are
        marked are mostly suppletive.

        The pronoun system apparently marked person and gender but not always number:

        female male mixed-sex group
        first-person ta sa tafu, tapi, saki...
        second-person fu pi famsu
        third-person ki num usam

        Verbs with different forms for different gendered subjects include
        those for "to love", "to dance", "to pee", "to have sex". "To love"
        for instance was "afam" (feminine), "ifau" (masculine), "aifa"
        (reciprocal, mixed-sex).

        --
        Jim Henry
        http://www.pobox.com/~jimhenry/
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