AffiliationUniversity of Arizona
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DescriptionPublished as Coyote Papers: Working Papers in Linguistics, Special Volume Dedicated to the Indigenous Languages of the Americas
AbstractThis paper argues for a specific hierarchical syntactic structure for Kaska, a Northern Athabaskan language spoken in the southern Yukon Territory and northeastern British Columbia. The arguments herein are grounded in Minimalist Syntax (Chomsky 1995; Collins 1997) and Distributed Morphology (Halle & Marantz 1994; Harley & Noyer 1999). Traditionally, Athabaskan morphology has exemplified templatic morphology, which by definition, has no meaningful correspondence between the underlying, morpho-syntactic hierarchy and the surface, morpho-phonological linear form. Using the derivation of transitive sentences, this paper shows that, in Kaska, there is a direct, meaningful correspondence between the hierarchical syntactic structure and the linear order of morphemes within the verb complex at spell-out.